Indicators and Tools for the Cost of Nutritious Diets - May 2018
|Post date||Friday, 1 June, 2018 - 13:47|
|Document Type||Tools and Guidance|
|Content Themes||Nutrition, Food Assistance, Food Security|
|Sources||Save the Children, WFP|
Several indicators that show the cost of nutritious diets have recently been developed. This document is a brief primer on these indicators, and describes the background, purpose, methods, and outputs of each.
These indicators, summarized in Table 1 at the end of this document, show the cost of foods needed to meet nutritional goals. All of them sum the prices of diverse foods available at a given time and place, using the least costly combination of foods needed to meet a defined standard of diet quality. Some foods are not available in a given market, so are not counted in the index for that time and place. Other foods are available but are too expensive to be counted. Like any measure of access, these indicators are not intended to reflect what people actually spend or purchase.
The indicators can be used for raising awareness and advocacy about access to nutritious diets (i.e. availability and affordability); for research on the determinants and consequences of food prices; and for formulating programs and policies to improve nutrition. For the agriculture sector, reducing the price of nutritious diets can be one important outcome, so indicators of the cost of nutritious diets can be used to design or evaluate programs and investments in nutrition-sensitive agriculture.