Taxation of unhealthy food is considered a regulation tool to improve diets. In 2011 Denmark introduced a tax on saturated fat in food products, the first country in the world to do so. The objective of the present paper is to investigate the effects of the tax on consumers' intake of saturated fat within three different types of food product group: minced beef, regular cream and sour cream.
We use an augmented version of the Linearized Almost Ideal Demand System (LAIDS) functional form for econometric analysis, allowing for tax-induced structural breaks.
Data originate from one of the largest retail chains in Denmark (Coop Danmark) and cover January 2010 to October 2012, with monthly records of sales volume, sales revenue and information about specific campaigns from 1293 stores.
The Danish fat tax had an insignificant or small negative effect on the price for low- and medium-fat varieties, and led to a 13-16 % price increase for high-fat varieties of minced beef and cream products. The tax induced substitution effects, budget effects and preference change effects on consumption, yielding a total decrease of 4-6 % in the intake of saturated fat from minced beef and regular cream, and a negligible effect on the intake from sour cream.
The Danish introduction of a tax on saturated fat in food in October 2011 had statistically significant effects on the sales of fat in minced beef and cream products, but the tax seems to have reduced the beyond-recommendation saturated fat intake to only a limited extent.
Access to varied, healthy and inexpensive foods is an important public health concern that has been widely documented. Consequently, there is an increasing interest in identifying food deserts, that is, socially deprived areas within cities that have poor access to food retailers. In this paper we propose a methodology based on three measures of accessibility to supermarkets calculated using geographic information systems (GIS), and on exploratory multivariate statistical analysis (hierarchical cluster analysis), which we use to identify food deserts in Montréal.
First, the use of three measures of accessibility to supermarkets is very helpful in identifying food deserts according to several dimensions: proximity (distance to the nearest supermarket), diversity (number of supermarkets within a distance of less than 1000 metres) and variety in terms of food and prices (average distance to the three closest different chain-name supermarkets). Next, the cluster analysis applied to the three measures of accessibility to supermarkets and to a social deprivation index demonstrates that there are very few problematic food deserts in Montréal. In fact, census tracts classified as socially deprived and with low accessibility to supermarkets are, on average, 816 metres away from the nearest supermarket and within 1.34 kilometres of three different chain-name supermarkets.
We conclude that food deserts do not represent a major problem in Montréal. Since geographic accessibility to healthy food is not a major issue in Montréal, prevention efforts should be directed toward the understanding of other mechanisms leading to an unhealthy diet, rather than attempting to promote an even spatial distribution of supermarkets.
Cites: Public Health Nutr. 2000 Mar;3(1):31-810786721
Cites: Am J Prev Med. 2002 Jan;22(1):23-911777675
Cites: Soc Sci Med. 2002 Jan;54(1):119-3211820676
Cites: BMJ. 2002 Aug 24;325(7361):436-812193363
Cites: J Epidemiol Community Health. 2004 Mar;58(3):208-1514966233
Cites: Am J Public Health. 2005 Apr;95(4):660-715798127
Cites: Appetite. 2005 Oct;45(2):195-715927303
Cites: Am J Public Health. 2006 Feb;96(2):325-3116380567
Cites: Int J Epidemiol. 2006 Feb;35(1):100-416338945
[Implementation of State Policy in healthy nutrition of the population of the Russian Federation on the regional level: building-up regional policy and programs. Methodical aspects of development and implementation. Part 2. Recommendations were made development and realization of regional policy and programs in the healthy nutrition of the population].
Several studies have examined supermarket access for low-income residents, but few have explored how access to healthy food changes when a new food retailer such as a farmers' market opens in a place previously known as a 'food desert'. This paper uses a 'before and after' approach to examine the impact of the introduction of a farmers' market on the price and availability of healthy food in an underserved urban neighbourhood. The farmers' market had a major impact on grocery prices in the neighbourhood, which decreased by almost 12% in 3 years.
This paper describes and analyses changes in food composition and nutritional preferences among the Chukchi and Yupik of coastal Chukotka in the last 15 years. The economic collapse of the infrastructure of Chukotka region has resulted in many indigenous northerners reverting to the traditional subsistence economy. Relatively expensive market foods are being replaced by cheaper ones, and by more readily available local foods. Percent contribution of proteins, lipids and carbohydrates to total caloric intake has not changed substantially, but sources of the major nutrients have become different. In 1985, local marine mammals accounted for about half of the consumed meat (55%), while in 2000 the share of it increased to 89 %. Market fats and oils are also being substituted by the fat of marine mammals. However, the contemporary diet of the natives of coastal Chukotka differs significantly from the traditional one. The meat of seals and gray whales (small sized and less dangerous to harvest) remains seasonally accessible, but can not be stored for long times. There is an insufficient amount of walrus and bowhead whale meat, which can be prepared in traditional style by fermentation, and stored for a long time. This probably also provides a specific protection against Helicobacter pylori. The young people today are more oriented towards local food-stuff: 76 % Coastal Chukchee and Yupik under the age of 30 indicated a preference for native foods over European ("Russian") ones, while this share is lower (66 %) among people older than 30 years. Overall, 86 % of natives consider that whale hunting, as the main source of food, should be increased (in 1985, only 45% suggested so).
Canadian agricultural policy supports higher milk prices. Consequently, poor families lack sufficient funds to purchase adequate quantities of milk. Low-income lone mothers in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia suggested their preferred strategies for improved access to milk. We then built inter-sectoral support for a policy intervention to address their recommendations. Our research-to-action process led to a policy dialogue focusing on an electronic smart card that would permit the delivery of lower-priced milk to poor households. While all agreed that milk insecurity was an important issue, the project ultimately failed because of the entrenched positions of influential stakeholder groups.
Network analysis provides a powerful tool to analyze complex influences of social and ecological structures on community and household dynamics. Most network studies of social-ecological systems use simple, undirected, unweighted networks. We analyze multiplex, directed, and weighted networks of subsistence food flows collected in three small indigenous communities in Arctic Alaska potentially facing substantial economic and ecological changes. Our analysis of plausible future scenarios suggests that changes to social relations and key households have greater effects on community robustness than changes to specific wild food resources.
Cites: Science. 2010 May 14;328(5980):876-8 PMID 20466926
Few authors have investigated the institutional character of charitable food programs and their capacity to address food security in Canada.
We surveyed food program managers at charitable agencies in Greater Victoria, British Columbia. We discuss the structure of the "system" of charitable food provision, the value of sourced food, types of services provided, clients' demographic profile, and the estimated healthfulness of meals served. We also describe the proportion of major food types purchased and donated to agencies.
Thirty-six agencies served approximately 20,000 meals a week to about 17,000 people. Food valued at $3.2 million was purchased or donated; approximately 50% was donated, mainly by corporations. The largest value of food purchased and donated was from meat and alternatives (40.9%) and nonperishable food items (16%). Dairy products made up the smallest share of donated foods.
Charitable food programs in Victoria depend on food donations. The proportion of dairy products and produce is low, which raises questions about the healthfulness of foods currently fed to homeless and poor people in the city.