Price incentives on healthy foods, price disincentives on unhealthy foods, and greater access to healthier foods have received much attention from policy-makers and researchers as potentially effective obesity policies. The aims of this study are to: 1) estimate models to quantify the own- and cross-price elasticities (i.e., sensitivity) of processed foods, fruits and vegetables, and fast-food demand by households with children; 2) develop new measures of healthy food access at the census tract level using GIS data on store locations and detailed scanner data on retailer-specific food sales, and evaluate the performance of the new measure in the context of the food demand model developed in Aim 1; and 3) expand the Research Triangle Institute (RTI) Food Pricing and Intake Simulator, an electronic toolkit for food pricing policy analyses developed by the study team with RWJF funding, to account for consumption of fruits and vegetables and fast foods and add new functional features to the toolkit. The updated toolkit will be able to simulate the dietary and fiscal impacts of food subsidies and taxes on overall nutrition and government revenue. This work will be conducted using data from children and adolescents ages 3 to 18 and their families who participated in Nielsen’s Homescan between 2004-2006, with a focus on lower-income and ethnic minorities.
Understanding How Food Pricing and Access Affect the Diets of Children and Their Families
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 … More
The Impact of Increasing SNAP Benefits on Stabilizing the Economy, Reducing Poverty and Food Insecurity amid COVID-19 Pandemic
With unemployment currently at a record high as a result of COVID-19, participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is expected to increase significantly. Congress has already passed three COVID-19 aid bills, which include SNAP provisions such as funding for emergency benefits for SNAP households and program administrative flexibilities. … More
Federal food programs like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) are the first line of defense against food insecurity in the United States. However, these benefits are often not sufficient to meet all of the food needs of … More