Food Costs Soar but Healthy Eating still Affordable

February 20, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- Healthy food is still affordable for the average family, despite the cost of food skyrocketing by 20 per cent since 2000, according to new research.

The survey, in Nutrition & Dietetics published by Wiley-Blackwell, found rising food costs have been matched by increasing average incomes and welfare payments - making the affordability of healthy food about the same as it was in 2000.

Researchers compared the results of the Illawarra Healthy Food Basket survey between 2000 and 2007 to monitor the affordability of healthy eating over time.

According to the survey, vegetables and fruit increased in price the most - by 56 per cent and 47 per cent, respectively. But the cost of bread, cereals and dairy foods stayed the same or even dropped over the seven-year period.

“It’s concerning that fruit and vegetable prices have gone up the most. Our study shows this rise has been offset by other prices coming down and by the increase in people’s income. So putting healthy food on the table is still possible even in this day and age,” said study co-author and Accredited Practising Dietitian Dr Peter Williams.

“Now more than ever, the Government needs to focus its policies on reducing the cost of healthy food like fruit and vegetables. All Australians should be able to access healthy foods at a reasonable price,” said Claire Hewat, Executive Director of the Dietitians Association of Australia.

“With warnings that climate change will put upward pressure on food prices, we’re encouraging Australians to prepare more homemade meals from basic food items, like fruit and vegetables. And this survey shows that it’s cheaper to buy fresh foods from the supermarket than to eat out,” Ms. Hewat added.

More information: This paper is published in February 2009, Nutrition & Dietetics (Vol. 66, Issue 1).
www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/122209385/abstract

Provided by Wiley

Explore further: Climate change will irreversibly force key ocean bacteria into overdrive

Related Stories

Power lines restrict sage grouse movement in Washington

August 25, 2015

Transmission lines that funnel power from hydroelectric dams and wind turbines across Eastern Washington affect greater sage grouse habitat by isolating fragile populations and limiting movement, a new study finds.

Ants self-medicate to fight disease

August 24, 2015

We humans have been using self-medication to cure the illnesses since the dawn of our species. There is some evidence that also other animals can exhibit this type of behavior, but the evidence has been hard to come by.

Recommended for you

How the finch changes its tune

August 3, 2015

Like top musicians, songbirds train from a young age to weed out errors and trim variability from their songs, ultimately becoming consistent and reliable performers. But as with human musicians, even the best are not machines. ...

Machine Translates Thoughts into Speech in Real Time

December 21, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- By implanting an electrode into the brain of a person with locked-in syndrome, scientists have demonstrated how to wirelessly transmit neural signals to a speech synthesizer. The "thought-to-speech" process ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.