Food and beverage prices can significantly affect food choices, as can individual economic stability and broader economic fluctuations. All families and caregivers should have the economic stability they need to invest in their children and help them thrive. Research in this area explores the possible health and economic impacts of using pricing and other economic strategies to promote consumption of healthy foods and beverages and discourage consumption of unhealthy products. It also explores macroeconomic impacts on food choice and the intersection between policies to support family economic wellbeing and food access and diet quality.

Research & Publications See all

April 2021

Examining the Effects of Taxes and Warning Labels on Parents’ Purchases of Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Using a Choice Experiment

The purpose of this study is to conduct a discrete choice experiment to investigate whether warning labels on Sugar-Sweetened Beverages (SSBs) alter the effectiveness of a tax on SSBs, especially among parents who are Black, Latinx and lower income. The research team will conduct an online choice experiment with 2,700 parents and caregivers of children More

May 2020

Sugary drink warnings: A meta-analysis of experimental studies

Policymakers worldwide are considering requiring warnings for sugary drinks. A growing number of experimental studies have examined sugary drink warnings’ impacts, but no research to our knowledge has synthesized this literature. To inform ongoing policy debates, this study aimed to identify the effects of sugary drink warnings compared with control conditions. Using a comprehensive search strategy, More

February 2020

Studying the impact of combining fiscal incentives and disincentives to improve healthy food purchases by low-income households with children

Using economic modeling, this study seeks to advance nutritional equity by identifying ways to lower economic barriers to healthy eating among low-income households with children. This study will identify mechanisms for directing unhealthy food and beverage tax revenues towards healthy incentives, particularly through existing federally-funded, but local and state-run programs such as WIC and SNAP. More

November 2019

Evaluating A USDA Program That Gives SNAP Participants Financial Incentives To Buy Fresh Produce In Supermarkets

Pricing incentives may reduce disparities in obesity among Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants by increasing fruit and vegetable purchases. However, few studies have evaluated the feasibility and effectiveness of those incentives in supermarkets, as opposed to farmers markets. In 2015 and 2016, as part of a US Department of Agriculture (USDA) pilot program, a More