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Effects of food price shocks on child malnutrition: The Mozambican experience 2008/2009

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  • Arndt, Channing
  • Hussain, M. Azhar
  • Salvucci, Vincenzo
  • Østerdal, Lars Peter

Abstract

A propitiously timed household survey carried out in Mozambique over the period 2008/2009 permits us to study the relationship between shifts in food prices and child nutrition status in a low income setting. We focus on weight-for-height and weight-for-age in different survey quarters characterized by very different food price inflation rates. Using propensity score matching techniques, we find that these nutrition measures, which are sensitive in the short run, improve significantly in the fourth quarter of the survey, when the inflation rate for basic food products is low, compared to the first semester or three quarters, when food price inflation was generally high. The prevalence of underweight, in particular, falls by about 40 percent. We conclude that the best available evidence points to food penury, driven by the food and fuel price crisis combined with a short agricultural production year, as substantially increasing malnutrition amongst under-five children in Mozambique.

Suggested Citation

  • Arndt, Channing & Hussain, M. Azhar & Salvucci, Vincenzo & Østerdal, Lars Peter, 2016. "Effects of food price shocks on child malnutrition: The Mozambican experience 2008/2009," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 22(C), pages 1-13.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ehbiol:v:22:y:2016:i:c:p:1-13
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ehb.2016.03.003
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:eee:jfpoli:v:83:y:2019:i:c:p:39-47 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Lotfali Agheli, 2016. "Demand for Natural Gas in Food and Beverage Industries of Iran," International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy, Econjournals, vol. 6(3), pages 588-593.
    3. Andinet Woldemichael & Kidane Daniel & Shimeles Abebe, 2017. "Working Paper 276 - A Tax on Children? Food Price Inflation and Health," Working Paper Series 2393, African Development Bank.
    4. Bauer, Jan M. & Mburu, Samuel, 2017. "Effects of drought on child health in Marsabit District, Northern Kenya," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 74-79.
    5. repec:eee:ehbiol:v:26:y:2017:i:c:p:30-41 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Pierre-Emmanuel Darpeix, 2019. "Literature review on the consequences of food price spikes and price volatility," PSE Working Papers hal-02072329, HAL.

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