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The"Glass of Milk"subsidy program and malnutrition in Peru

  • Stifel, David
  • Alderman, Harold

The authors evaluate the Vaso de Leche (VL) feeding program in Peru. They pose the question that if a community-based multistage targeting scheme such as that of the VL program is progressive, is it possible that the program can achieve its nutritional objectives? The authors address this by linking VL public expenditure data with household survey data to assess the targeting, and then to model the determinants of nutritional outcomes of children to see if VL program interventions have an impact on nutrition. They confirm that the VL program is well targeted to poor households and to those with low nutritional status. While the bulk of the coverage of the poor is attributed to targeting of poor districts, the fact that the poor receive larger in-kind transfers is attributed to intradistrict targeting. But the impactof these food subsidies beyond their value as income transfers is limited by the degree to which the commodity transfers are inframarginal. The authors find that transfers of milk and milk substitutes from the VL program are inframarginal for approximately half of the households that receive them. So, it is not entirely surprising that they fail to find econometric evidence of the nutritional objectives of the VL program being achieved. In models of child standardized heights, the authors find no impact of the VL program expenditures on the nutritional outcomes of young children-the group to whom the program is targeted.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 3089.

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Date of creation: 30 Jun 2003
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:3089
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  1. Lanjouw, Peter & Ravallion, Martin, 1999. "Benefit Incidence, Public Spending Reforms, and the Timing of Program Capture," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 13(2), pages 257-73, May.
  2. Alderman, H. & Chiappori, P.A. & Haddad, L., 1994. "Unitary versus Collective Models of the Household: Time to Shift the Burden of Proof?," DELTA Working Papers 94-17, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  3. Schady, Norbert R, 2002. "Picking the Poor: Indicators for Geographic Targeting in Peru," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 48(3), pages 417-33, September.
  4. Galasso, Emanuela & Ravallion, Martin, 2005. "Decentralized targeting of an antipoverty program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(4), pages 705-727, April.
  5. Duclos, Jean-Yves, 1995. "Modelling the take-up of state support," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 391-415, November.
  6. Filmer, Deon & Pritchett, Lant, 1998. "Estimating wealth effects without expenditure data - or tears : with an application to educational enrollments in states of India," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1994, The World Bank.
  7. D. E. Sahn & D. C. Stifel, 2002. "Parental Preferences for Nutrition of Boys and Girls: Evidence from Africa," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(1), pages 21-45.
  8. David E. Sahn & David Stifel, 2003. "Exploring Alternative Measures of Welfare in the Absence of Expenditure Data," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 49(4), pages 463-489, December.
  9. Conning, Jonathan & Kevane, Michael, 2002. "Community-Based Targeting Mechanisms for Social Safety Nets: A Critical Review," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 375-394, March.
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