The objective of this work was to study the consumer habits of street market customers in the municipality of Alfenas, Minas Gerais state. More specifically, the aim was to characterize the customers according to their social and economic status and purchasing habits and to identify the variables that determine their attendance in the street market. Cluster analysis was done to group customers with similar characteristics and habits. The Logit model was then used to test the effects of the variables on the customer’s attendance. The results indicate that the street market presents a heterogeneous public as far as age, per capita income, schooling and occupation are concerned; it does present, however, similarities as to the reason for preferring the street market, the most purchased products and the attendance intervals. It was found that the habit of going to the street market to buy, essentially, fruits and vegetables, is regardless of the customer’s financial status, but is related to the idea that the street market is an appropriate place to obtain healthy foods, which lead to a healthier diet, besides being a leisure environment. The results reinforce the importance of understanding this popular environment more thoroughly because they can subsidize health and nutrition policies which aim to plan, diagnose and intervene in the situations raised.


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