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Publications

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53 publications, sorted by date 

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ERR-161, January 16, 2014
This study analyzes how improvements in dietary quality among working-age adults from 2005 to 2010 may be related to reduced consumption of food away from home.
Amber Waves, September 03, 2013
ERS research found that offering school lunches with a healthier mix of vegetables was associated with higher consumption of healthier vegetables, but also higher food costs. “Competitive foods” that many schools sell in addition to USDA school meals will also follow new nutrition standards beginnin...
Amber Waves, July 01, 2013
As food companies compete for customers, the health and nutritional features of their products are becoming an increasingly important component of their differentiation strategies. Government policies, new health information, and changing consumer preferences all shape the number and types of health...
Amber Waves, February 21, 2013
Grocery store purchase data reveal that Americans underspend on fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and overspend on refined grains, fats, and sugars/sweets, compared with USDA's dietary recommendations, a pattern that showed little change from 1998 to 2006. Food choices when eating out are even mo...
EIB-108, February 20, 2013
New food labeling regulations and new diet and nutrition information can affect food companies’ use of health- and nutrition-related claims. This report examines the use of these claims from 1989 to 2010.
EIB-105, December 27, 2012
The increased popularity and lower nutritional quality of food away from home (FAFH) prompts new health promotion strategies. Over the past 30 years, food at home has changed more in response to dietary guidance than FAFH, particularly for fat and calcium content.
EIB-95, April 18, 2012
Federal agencies that are charged with giving dietary advice to consumers—the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services—recommend that consumers keep their intake of trans fatty acids as low as possible. To that end, Federal regulations now require food labe...
EIB-83, September 23, 2011
Over the last 20 years, awareness of diet-related health concerns has become widespread in the United States as obesity, along with its associated human and financial costs, has increased. To estimate how this awareness affects Americans’ perceptions of their own diet quality over this period and th...
Amber Waves, March 14, 2011
A 2010 Federal law will require U.S. chain restaurants to display calorie information on their menus and menu boards. Will consumers use this information to make healthier food choices?
EIB-71, February 01, 2011
Federal dietary guidance advises Americans to consume more vegetables and fruits because most Americans do not consume the recommended quantities or variety. Food prices, along with taste, convenience, income, and awareness of the link between diet and health, shape food choices. We used 2008 Nielse...
Amber Waves, June 01, 2009
Policies designed to improve the diet quality and health of Americans are likely to have only marginal effects on consumers’ food choices. However, policies targeted directly at consumers such as nutrition information and education programs, along with labeling regulations, can spur the reformulatio...
EIB-39, September 09, 2008
This report examines U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) data on refusals of food offered for importation into the United States from 1998 to 2004. Although the data do not necessarily reflect the distribution of risk in foods, the study found that import refusals highlight food safety problems ...
ERR-62, August 11, 2008
Poor diets and rising obesity rates among Americans persist despite increased public awareness of the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. This report presents a consumer demand model to illustrate how both long-term health objectives and immediate visceral influences—long intervals between meals and ea...
ERR-63, August 11, 2008
This report examines changes in consumers' use of nutrition labels on food packages between 1995-96 and 2005-06. The analysis finds that, although a majority of consumers report using nutrition labels when buying food, use has declined for most label components, including the Nutrition Facts panel a...
EIB-29, September 27, 2007
Food stamp recipients, like other Americans, struggle with nutrition problems associated with choice of foods, as well as amounts. This series of Economic Information Bulletins compiles evidence to help answer the question of whether the Food Stamp Program can do more to improve the food choices of ...
EIB-29-1, September 27, 2007
The increased food purchasing power offered by the Food Stamp Program can promote food security and improve the overall economic well-being of low-income households. Now, as Americans struggle with obesity and other diet-related health problems, there is interest in whether the program can be more e...
EIB-29-3, September 27, 2007
The cost of “enough food,” estimated from the amount that low- and medium-income households in a geographic area report needing to spend to just meet their food needs, differs substantially across States and among metropolitan areas. In areas with high food costs, many food-stamp recipients are like...
EIB-29-4, September 27, 2007
The Food Stamp Program provides benefits that low-income households can use to purchase food in grocery stores. The rise in obesity has raised the question of whether food stamp participants would purchase more healthy foods, such as fruits and vegetables, if food stamp benefits were higher. This re...
EIB-29-5, September 27, 2007
This brief examines how consumers respond to food prices and how consumers’ response to price influences their purchases of particular foods, using examples drawn from previous ERS research. Implications of the findings for the use of price interventions to improve food choices are considered.
EIB-29-6, September 27, 2007
The Food Stamp Nutrition Education (FSNE) component of the Food Stamp Program is intended to improve the food choices, diet quality, and health of program participants. This brief discusses the FSNE program, how it operates, and how it has grown over time. The brief also considers the challenges of ...
EIB-29-7, September 27, 2007
With obesity the most prevalent nutrition problem facing Americans at all economic levels, promoting diets that provide adequate nutrition without too many calories has become an important objective for the Food Stamp Program. Findings from behavioral economics suggest innovative, low-cost ways to i...
EIB-29-8, September 27, 2007
Currently, the effects of the Food Stamp Program on the food choices and diet quality of participants are the subject of much debate. Improved evaluation of the nutrition and health effects of the program would be of use to program and policy officials, but most of the existing research is limited b...
ERR-31, November 20, 2006
To help Americans meet nutritional requirements while staying within caloric recommendations, the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans encourage consumption of fruits, vegetables, whole-grain products, and fat-free or low-fat milk or milk products. This report provides one view of the potential imp...
EIB-19, October 17, 2006
Whether eating out or buying carry-out, Americans are consuming more and more of their calories from full-service and fast-food restaurant fare. The share of daily caloric intake from food purchased and/or eaten away from home increased from 18 percent to 32 percent between the late 1970s and the mi...
EIB-5, September 29, 2005
Food Dynamics provides the most up-to-date information on consumer behavior and retail food market conditions.
LDPM-13401, August 24, 2005
This report provides a detailed description and analysis of Japan’s policies that support its milk producers and regulate dairy markets. Domestic supply controls boost the milk price, and government subsidies for producing manufacturing milk, for environmental improvements, and for hazard insurance ...
ERR-4, April 27, 2005
Americans spent about 46 percent of their total food budget on food away from home in 2002, up from 27 percent in 1962. Such foods tend to be less nutritious and higher in calories than foods prepared at home, and some studies have linked eating away from home to overweight and obesity in adults and...
AIB-796, February 14, 2005
The five summaries in the Nutrition and Health Characteristics of Low-Income Populations series highlight key findings of the multi-volume Nutrition and Health Outcomes Study. The summaries examine the nutritional and health status of: Food Stamp Program (FSP) participants; Special Supplemental Nutr...
AIB-796-1, February 14, 2005
The Healthy Eating Index measures how well American diets conform to recommended healthy eating patterns, looking at 10 dietary components. The Nutrition and Health Characteristics of Low-Income Populations study examined the Healthy Eating Index using 1988-94 National Health and Nutrition Examinati...
AIB-796-3, February 14, 2005
The Nutrition and Health Characteristics of Low-Income Populations study examined several measures of body weight status for children and adults using 1988-94 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) data. The measures provide a baseline to monitor the weight status of Americans, fo...
AIB-796-4, February 14, 2005
The Nutrition and Health Characteristics of Low-Income Populations study examined several eating behaviors for children and adults using 1988-94 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES-III) data. The measures provide a baseline to monitor eating behaviors of Americans, focusing on t...
AIB-796-5, February 14, 2005
The Nutrition and Health Characteristics of Low-Income Populations study examined several eating behaviors for children and adults using 1988-94 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES-III) data. This summary focuses on the nutritional biochemistry blood tests and bone density measu...
AIB-791, October 28, 2004
This report uses data from the USDA's 1994-96 Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals and the 1994-96 Diet and Health Knowledge Survey to ascertain whether economic factors help explain weight differences among adults. Weight differs among demographic subgroups, and differences in specific ...
AIB-747, August 13, 2004
These reports synthesize economic analyses of the complex relationships in food markets of interest to officials responsible for public policy, decisionmakers in the industry, and researchers. Topics addressed so far include the economizing practices of low-income households in making food purchases...
TB-1911, May 14, 2004
Results from the first national survey of the types and amounts of food safety investments made by meat and poultry slaughter and processing plants since the late 1990s provide evidence that market forces have worked in conjunction with regulation to promote the use of more sophisticated food safety...
EFAN-04004, May 13, 2004
Since the mid-1970s, the prevalence of obesity and overweight has increased dramatically in the United States. The prevalence of overweight has tripled among children and adolescents, and nearly two out of three adult Americans are either overweight or obese. Although high health, social, and econom...
AER-831, April 01, 2004
Recent industry innovations improving the safety of the Nation's meat supply range from new pathogen tests, high-tech equipment, and supply chain management systems, to new surveillance networks. Despite these and other improvements, the market incentives that motivate private firms to invest in inn...
AER-830, March 18, 2004
This investigation into the traceability baseline in the United States finds that private sector food firms have developed a substantial capacity to trace.
AIB-789-1, February 28, 2004
This research brief presents some of the highlights of the ERS report, "International Trade and Food Safety: Economic Theory and Case Studies."
AIB-789-2, February 28, 2004
This research brief examines the conceptual relationships between food safety and international trade.
AIB-789-3, February 28, 2004
This research brief examines the conceptual relationships between food safety and international trade, and discusses ways to resolve safety-related trade disputes.
AIB-789-4, February 28, 2004
This research summarizes three case studies of how trade in meat and poultry products can be affected by food safety concerns.
AIB-789-5, February 28, 2004
This report examines how U.S. and other nations responded to foodborne illness outbreaks traced to internationally-traded food.
AIB-789-6, February 28, 2004
This research brief discusses regulations intended to control mycotoxins in the food supply, and examines their implications for international trade.
AIB-789-7, February 28, 2004
This research summarizes three case studies of how trade in seafood products can be affected by food safety concerns.
WRS-04-02, January 23, 2004
This report examines the economic rationale behind the various claims about the effects of mandatory country-of-origin labeling, thereby identifying the most likely outcomes. Profits motivate firms to innovate and introduce thousands of new food products each year to satisfy consumers' demand. Yet, ...
AER-828, November 07, 2003
This report examines the conceptual relationships between food safety and international trade and analyzes empirical examples from the meat and poultry, produce, food and animal feed crop, and seafood sectors.
AER-820, February 03, 2003
This report analyzes how U.S. consumption of food commodities is projected to rise through 2020. The study uses date from USDA's food intake survey to project the consumption, through 2020, of 25 food groups and 22 commodity groups.
EFAN-02-013, July 01, 2002
This report provides a toolkit of standardized measurement tools for assessing various aspects of community food security. It includes a general guide to community assessment and focused materials for examining six basic assessment components related to community food security. These include guides ...
WRS-01-1, May 30, 2001
Higher income, urbanization, other demographic shifts, improved transportation, and consumer perceptions regarding quality and safety are changing global food consumption patterns. Shifts in food consumption have led to increased trade and changes in the composition of world agricultural trade. Give...
FANRR-13, March 01, 2001
A minimum of $3.6 billion would be saved if breastfeeding were increased from current levels (64 percent in-hospital, 29 percent at 6 months) to those recommended by the U.S. Surgeon General (75 and 50 percent). This figure is likely an underestimation of the total savings because it represents cost...
AER-793, January 25, 2001
Federal intervention in food labeling is often proposed with the aim of achieving a social goal such as improving human health and safety, mitigating environmental hazards, averting international trade disputes, or supporting domestic agricultural and food manufacturing industries. Economic theory s...
AER-741, August 01, 1996
Microbial pathogens in food cause an estimated 6.5-33 million cases of human illness and up to 9,000 deaths in the United States each year. Over 40 different foodborne microbial pathogens, including fungi, viruses, parasites, and bacteria, are believed to cause human illnesses. For six bacterial pat...

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