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Modelling the likely impact of healthy eating guidelines on agriculture in England and Wales


  • Arnoult, Matthieu H.
  • Jones, Philip J.
  • Tranter, Richard B.
  • Tiffin, J. Richard
  • Traill, W. Bruce


Household food consumption data is used to estimate likely changes in diet under healthy eating guidelines, and the consequences this would have on the agricultural sector in England and Wales. The first step entails imposing nutrient restrictions on food consumption following dietary recommendations. The resulting diet is then used as a proxy for demand in agricultural commodities, to test the impact of such a scenario on agricultural land use and production. Results of the diet optimisation indicate a severe drop in foods rich in saturated fats and sugar, essentially cheese and sugar-based products, along with lesser cuts in fat and meat products Conversely, consumption of fruit & vegetables, cereals, and flour would increase to meet dietary fibre recommendations. Such a shift in demand would dramatically affect production patterns: the margin of England and Wales agriculture would rise, due to increased production of high market value and high margin crops. Some regions would however be negatively affected, mostly those regions dependent on beef and sheep production that could not benefit from an increased demand for cereals. The effects of these changes would also be felt in upstream industries such as feed suppliers.

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  • Arnoult, Matthieu H. & Jones, Philip J. & Tranter, Richard B. & Tiffin, J. Richard & Traill, W. Bruce, 2008. "Modelling the likely impact of healthy eating guidelines on agriculture in England and Wales," 2008 International Congress, August 26-29, 2008, Ghent, Belgium 44331, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:eaae08:44331

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    1. Srinivasan, C.S. & Irz, Xavier & Shankar, Bhavani, 2006. "An assessment of the potential consumption impacts of WHO dietary norms in OECD countries," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 53-77, February.
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    Dietary guidelines; land use; agricultural production; Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety; Land Economics/Use;

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