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Food Price Subsidies and Nutrition: Evidence from State Reforms to India's Public Distribution System

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  • Krishnamurthy, Prasad
  • Pathania, Vikram
  • Tandon, Sharad

Abstract

We investigate whether food price subsidies affect household nutrition using a dramatic expansion of the availability of subsidized rice in the Indian state of Chhattisgarh in the early 2000's. Households in Chhattisgarh increased their consumption of pulses, animal-based protein, and produce relative to households in districts bordering the state as the availability of subsidized rice expanded. This increase is driven by households eligible for rice subsidies, and we do not find evidence that ineligible households changed their diet. These results contrast with recent studies suggesting that food subsidies have little effect on nutrition.

Suggested Citation

  • Krishnamurthy, Prasad & Pathania, Vikram & Tandon, Sharad, 2014. "Food Price Subsidies and Nutrition: Evidence from State Reforms to India's Public Distribution System," 2014 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2014, Minneapolis, Minnesota 169753, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea14:169753
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jha, Skikha & Ramaswami, Bharat, 2012. "The Percolation of Public Expenditure: Food Subsidies and the Poor in India and the Philippines," India Policy Forum, National Council of Applied Economic Research, vol. 8(1), pages 95-138.
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    4. Tarozzi, Alessandro, 2005. "The Indian Public Distribution System as provider of food security: Evidence from child nutrition in Andhra Pradesh," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(5), pages 1305-1330, July.
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    6. Timothy K.M. Beatty & Charlotte J. Tuttle, 2015. "Expenditure Response to Increases in In-Kind Transfers: Evidence from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 97(2), pages 390-404.
    7. Neeraj Kaushal & Felix Muchomba, 2013. "How Consumer Price Subsidies affect Nutrition," NBER Working Papers 19404, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Thomas M. Fraker & Alberto P. Martini & James C. Ohls, 1995. "The Effect of Food Stamp Cashout on Food Expenditures: An Assessment of the Findings from Four Demonstrations," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 30(4), pages 633-649.
    9. Reetika Khera, 2011. "Trends In Diversion Of Pds Grain," Working papers 198, Centre for Development Economics, Delhi School of Economics.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Tandon, Sharad, 2015. "How much do Experiential Measures of Food Security Tell us About Nutrition?," 2015 AAEA & WAEA Joint Annual Meeting, July 26-28, San Francisco, California 204911, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    2. Priyam Sengupta & Kakali Mukhopadhyay, 2016. "Economic and Environmental Impact of National Food Security Act of India," Agricultural and Food Economics, Springer;Italian Society of Agricultural Economics (SIDEA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-23, December.
    3. Sudha Narayanan & Nicolas Gerber, 2015. "Social safety nets for food and nutritional security in India," Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai Working Papers 2015-031, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, India.
    4. Andaleeb Rahman, 2015. "Universal Food Security Program and Nutritional Intake: Evidence from the Hunger Prone KBK Districts in Odisha," Working Papers id:6925, eSocialSciences.
    5. Sudha Narayanan & Nicolas Gerber & Udayan Rathore & Karthikeya Naraparaju, 2017. "Can social safety nets protect public health? The effect of India's workfare and foodgrain subsidy programmes on anaemia," Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai Working Papers 2017-021, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, India.
    6. Andaleeb Rahman, 2015. "Universal food security program and nutritional intake: Evidence from the hunger prone KBK districts in Odisha," Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai Working Papers 2015-015, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, India.
    7. Priyam Sengupta & Kakali Mukhopadhyay, 2016. "Economic and Environmental Impact of National Food Security Act of India," Agricultural and Food Economics, Springer;Italian Society of Agricultural Economics (SIDEA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-23, December.
    8. Sudha Narayanan Narayanan & Nicolas Gerber, 2016. "Safety Nets for Food and Nutritional Security in India," FOODSECURE Working papers 37, LEI Wageningen UR.
    9. Rahman, Andaleeb, 2016. "Universal food security program and nutritional intake: Evidence from the hunger prone KBK districts in Odisha," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 73-86.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Consumer/Household Economics; Demand and Price Analysis; Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety; Food Security and Poverty; Health Economics and Policy; International Development;

    JEL classification:

    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O21 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Planning Models; Planning Policy
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East

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