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Trends in Inequality in Food Consumption and Calorie Intake in India: Evidence from the Last Three Decades, 1983–2012

Author

Listed:
  • Ashish Singh

    () (Indian Institute of Technology Bombay)

  • Kaushalendra Kumar

    () (International Institute for Population Sciences)

  • Abhishek Singh

    () (International Institute for Population Sciences)

Abstract

Abstract This study estimates inequality in Food consumption and Calorie intake for India and its fifteen major states for the period 1983–2012. Data for the study are drawn from the nationally representative Consumer Expenditure Surveys of India from 1983 to 2012. Inequality measures such as Gini Index (GI) and Economic Disparity Ratios are computed for per capita monthly food consumption expenditure (MPFCE) and per capita daily calorie intake. The study reveals an increase in the GI of MPFCE in both rural and urban areas within the period 1993–2012. This suggests the non-inclusiveness of the post economic reforms in India. Further, the findings show a decrease in the GI of calorie intake in both rural and urban areas within the same period. Comparatively, the inter-state GI in MPFCE has increased in rural and urban areas, while the inter-state inequality in Calorie intake decreased in both rural and urban areas within the period of study. Some policy implications of this study include: governmental focus on improving, overhauling, and increasing the efficiency of the existing Public Distribution System. Also, the effective implementation of the National Food Security Act, 2013 to provide subsidized food grains for two thirds of India’s population and Mid-Day Meal Scheme for school children.

Suggested Citation

  • Ashish Singh & Kaushalendra Kumar & Abhishek Singh, 2016. "Trends in Inequality in Food Consumption and Calorie Intake in India: Evidence from the Last Three Decades, 1983–2012," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 128(3), pages 1319-1346, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:soinre:v:128:y:2016:i:3:d:10.1007_s11205-015-1081-8
    DOI: 10.1007/s11205-015-1081-8
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    References listed on IDEAS

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