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The demand for calories in developing countries (英语)

This paper uses household survey data on consumption to analyze the determinants of calorie intakes in developing countries. It relies on characteristic demand analysis for a demand function specification for calories. It explores the effect of calories price differences, income, and other socioeconomic factors on the intracountry and intercountry distribution of calorie intakes. The paper reaches three broad conclusions: (i) both income and price elasticities of demand for calories are below unity and are substantial for poorer consumers; (ii) even a moderate increase in calorie prices implies a large nutritional sacrifice for the poor if present income growth and distribution trends continue; and (iii) if moderate redistribution policies permit a substantial portion of the income increase to be allocated to the poor, sizable calorie price increases would not rule out elimination of malnutrition.