Lydia Zepeda

Lydia Zepeda

Professor Emerita, Consumer Science, and Faculty Affiliate Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, PhD
4104 Nancy Nicholas Hall 1300 Linden Drive
608-262-9487

You are what you eat.

My research on food production, consumption and access is motivated by my family history: a great grandfather who lost his life trying to bring farm machinery to Mexico, a grandfather who lost his land and home in Mexico, an infant uncle who died of hunger in the US, many relatives who were agricultural workers in the US and many more with type II diabetes.  These events have inspired me to investigate agricultural technological change and policy, land access, family farm labor, mobile markets in food deserts, and consumer food choices.  I am particularly interested in changes in our food system that are linked with healthier, more sustainable and more socially just food choices, particularly organic and local foods.  I employ a variety of quantitative and qualitative tools using behavioral economic models (incorporating theories such as Self Determination theory, Symbolic Interactionism) to investigate consumer food choices, and their relationships with food skills and knowledge, attitudes, policy and the food environment.

Lydia Zepeda CV