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Abstract

A nutritional transition is occurring in Sri Lanka, which steers people away from nutrient-rich diets, contributing to diet-related disease and poor economic performance. This study examines demographic impacts on consumption of major food commodities and estimates price and expenditure elasticities for major food groups and nutrients. Data from the Sri Lankan Department of Census and Statistics Household Income and Expenditure survey are used to estimate price and expenditure elasticities for food commodities and nutrients using the Quadratic Almost Ideal Demand System (QUAIDS). The zero-expenditure problem is circumvented by employing a Tobit model. Results demonstrate the impact of price and income changes on dietary intake of households, and income and nutrition policy recommendations are presented.

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