Valerie Lechene (University College London)
Kalai Family Workshop in Econometrics
Mar 1 2018
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A structural analysis of the decline of home-cooked food
Abstract: The share of home-cooked food in the diet of households has declined considerably over the past few decades across the developed world. We develop and estimate a structural model of food consumption and time use to understand the key driving forces. We show that the market price of ingredients for home cooking has declined relative to the price of ready-to-eat foods. However, once we account for the fact that cooking takes time we nd that the opposite is true - the shadow price of home-cooked food has risen relative to ready-to-eat food. This is because there has been an the increase in the market value of time of secondary earners. We show that increased taxes alone would not be sucient to incentivise households to shift back to home-cooked food, as the required tax increase is too high to be feasible.
Keywords: food, consumption, time use, shadow prices, AIDS.