Cash Incentives and Unhealthy Food Consumption
The costs associated with unhealthy food consumption are not only paid by those suffering from overweight but by all members of society in terms of higher costs for social security systems. With this in mind, we study the effectiveness of a tax, a subsidy and cash incentives in reducing unhealthy food consumption. Using an inter-temporal rational choice model with habit, we calibrate and simulate the effect of those policies to US and UK data. Our findings suggest that cash incentives may be the most effective policy in reducing unhealthy food consumption yet it can be the most costly one. Taxes are relatively ineffective in reducing unhealthy food consumption. Subsidies have the best balance between effectiveness and monetary benefits to the society.
|Date of creation:||Oct 2011|
|Date of revision:||Jan 2012|
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