Income variability, evolving diets, and demand for processed foods in Nigeria
Intl Food Policy Res Inst, Jan 3, 2019 - Political Science - 44 pages
We present evidence on evolving dietary patterns in Nigeria using three waves and six total rounds of household consumption data from the Nigerian Living Standards and Measurement Surveys between the years of 2011 and 2016. First, following conventional definitions in the literature, we show that Nigeria has not shown any aggregate increase in consumption of highly processed foods over this time period, contrary to studies elsewhere in the region. In fact, consumption of highly processed foods at home has decreased, while food away consumed away from home has risen substantially. We then show that estimates of food expenditure elasticities of different food types are highly sensitive to different estimation approaches, raising concerns regarding the existing evidence base on food consumption patterns reliant on estimation of food expenditure elasticities. Different specifications can lead to broadly differing conclusions about whether highly processed food is either the most or least elastic food category. In our preferred specifications, we find that elasticity of demand for food away from home is highest for the relatively wealthy and in the urban South. Within households, elasticities are highest in times of scarcity, suggesting that households cut food away from home when resources are relatively scarce.
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adjustment areas average Cobb-Douglas Cocoyam column consumed at home consumption of highly cross-sectional Data source descriptive statistics eaten at home elasticities of food elasticity estimates epanechnikov Exps FEs Yes food categories food consumption food demand elasticities food eaten food expenditure elasticities Food Policy Research Food Value functional form Groundnuts High High High highly processed foods household fixed effects hyperbolic sine IFPRI IHST form IHST transformation income increase independent variable International Food Policy level of processing Living Standards Measurement log transformation Log(Z logarithmic Low Processed Maize Measurement Survey LSMS Meat Meat Meat micronutrients Nigeria Living Standards overall food expenditures Panel percentile Perishable High Fat Perishable Low Grain Perishable None Fruit Perishable None Grain Perishable None Pulse Perishable Not Perishable Perishable Perishable Perishable Policy Research Institute positive consumption post-harvest regression Rural North Standards Measurement Survey total food expenditures trends Tschirley unprocessed value of food Veg Veg Veg Yes Yes Yes zeros