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The dynamics of fast food consumption in a South African urban township environment
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The delineation of ethnographic qualitative research methods allowed for this study to explore the dynamics of fast food consumption in the South African urban township environment. This study aimed to investigate the factors that influence the consumption of fast food. The research question states what factors in the urban township environment create increased fast food consumption and decreased consumption of traditional foods which are healthier and more nutritious. The empirical data consisted of a series of transect walks, observations and sixteen interviews with various families living in the urban township about their daily food consumption patterns and why they prefer to consume fast foods over other available options. The approach of this study was based on the interpretivism paradigm with social constructivism theory, as the concepts allow the in-depth investigation of social practices. The themes identified from the empirical data, through the descriptive coding data analysis process, consists of socio-cultural, economic, and biological determinants of fast food consumption. It was evident that the South African urban township environment perpetuates the consumption because people do not have space for substance farming; the ingredients of traditional meals are scarce, and the fast-food industry is enormous in the urban area and offers convenience to quickly access diverse kinds of meals. It was evident that various factors influence fast-food consumption, and advocating for alternative eating will require understanding the complexities that lead to people preferring fast foods over other foods. ...
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