Micronutrient deficiency has become a serious health concern in many countries and Sri Lanka is no exception. Inclusion of vegetables and fruits, which are rich in micronutrients, in the diet is considered as one of the most cost effective measures to alleviate such deficiencies. The purpose of this paper is to analyze consumer demand for fruits in Sri Lanka. The specific objectives are to: (i) describe the patterns of fruit consumption across various households groups (ii) document the changes that have taken place in the local fruit supply for meeting the changes in demand, and (iii) to estimate price and income effects of changes in fruit consumption during 1981-2010. The study was conducted using secondary data which were extracted from government publications. The analysis shows that banana, papaw, mangoes and pineapple are the major fruits consumed and the consumption levels of such fruits have been rising over the years. The urban households and the households in high-income deciles are found to be allocating a relatively higher proportion of their food expenditure on fruits. The country is self sufficient in most of the fruits and only a small portion is traded. The results of econometric estimations reveal large income effects and relatively small price effects. A larger role for income based interventions as opposed to price based interventions to improve fruit consumption in Sri Lanka is evident from the results.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: INFORMAS (International Network for Food and Obesity/non-communicable diseases Research, Monitoring and Action Support) aims to monitor and benchmark the healthiness of food environments globally. In order to assess the impact of food environments on population diets, it is necessary to monitor population diet quality between countries and over time. This paper reviews existing data sources suitable for monitoring population diet quality, and assesses their strengths and limitations. A step-wise framework is then proposed for monitoring population diet quality. Food balance sheets (FBaS), household budget and expenditure surveys (HBES) and food intake surveys are all suitable methods for assessing population diet quality. In the proposed ‘minimal’ approach, national trends of food and energy availability can be explored using FBaS. In the ‘expanded’ and ‘optimal’ approaches, the dietary share of ultra-processed products is measured as an indicator of energy-dense, nutrient-poor diets using HBES and food intake surveys, respectively. In addition, it is proposed that pre-defined diet quality indices are used to score diets, and some of those have been designed for application within all three monitoring approaches. However, in order to enhance the value of global efforts to monitor diet quality, data collection methods and diet quality indicators need further development work.
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