Food consumption patterns in light of rising incomes, urbanization and food retail modernization
This PhD dissertation published by ProQuest provides new insight into the nature of the diet transformation that is unfolding in Eastern and Southern Africa, and on some of its drivers and effects. It considers the effects of income, urbanization and food retail modernization on the commodity makeup and source of foods in household diets, including processed foods. Transitioning food consumption patterns are not solely a middle-class story. In fact, poor households are already consuming surprisingly high levels of purchased food and are consuming greater shares of non-grain foods as their incomes rise. Spatial considerations of increasing city size and reduced distance to cities also have significant positive effects on purchased share. This affirms the expectation that households will purchase more food (compared to consuming own production) when they have increased access to markets. Processed foods have penetrated the diets of rural and urban households at all levels across the income distribution. The patterns of increased processed share with income growth and urbanicity signal a strong future demand for increased food market infrastructure. With regards to food retail modernization can be said that households that consume some food from supermarkets continue to purchase the majority of their processed food from non-supermarket retailers. Conditional on the presence of a supermarket, households in smaller cities consume greater shares of food, by value, from supermarkets than households in larger cities.