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Nutrition transition and changing food preferences in India

Law, C. ORCID:, Fraser, I. and Piracha, M. (2020) Nutrition transition and changing food preferences in India. Journal of Agricultural Economics, 71 (1). pp. 118-143. ISSN 0021-857X

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1111/1477-9552.12322


We present empirical evidence on how changes in food preferences have contributed to nutrition transition, where the dietary pattern of households shifts away from traditional staples. Using household-level time series cross-section survey data for India, we estimate time varying demand elasticities, revealing evidence of the declining importance of cereals in Indian household diets. The estimates show that Indian demand for cereals has become more income inelastic and price elastic. We also find that cereals are a substitute rather than a complement to animal products in household diets. Since changes in elasticities can only be attributed to variation in utility parameters, this indicates that cereals are losing favour with Indian households. These findings have implications for Indian food policy design and implementation.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Interdisciplinary Research Centres (IDRCs) > Institute for Food, Nutrition and Health (IFNH)
Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development > Department of Agri-Food Economics & Marketing
ID Code:103445


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