Shopping Around: How Households Adjusted Food Spending Over the Great Recession

34 Pages Posted: 9 Mar 2016

See all articles by Rachel Griffith

Rachel Griffith

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS); University of Manchester; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Martin O'Connell

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS)

Kate Smith

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS); University College London

Date Written: April 2016

Abstract

Over the Great Recession, UK households reduced real food expenditure. We show that they were able to maintain the number of calories that they purchased, and the nutritional quality of these calories, by adjusting their shopping behaviour. We document the mechanisms that households used. We motivate our analysis with a model of shopping behaviour in which households adjust shopping effort and the characteristics of their shopping basket in response to economic shocks. We use detailed longitudinal data and focus on within‐household changes in basket characteristics and proxies for shopping effort.

Suggested Citation

Griffith, Rachel and O'Connell, Martin and Smith, Kate, Shopping Around: How Households Adjusted Food Spending Over the Great Recession (April 2016). Economica, Vol. 83, Issue 330, pp. 247-280, 2016. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2745017 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ecca.12166

Rachel Griffith (Contact Author)

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) ( email )

7 Ridgmount Street
London WC1E 7AE
United Kingdom
+44 20 7291 4800 (Phone)
+44 20 7323 4780 (Fax)

University of Manchester ( email )

Arthur Lewis Building
Oxford Road
Manchester, M13 9PL
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.ifs.org.uk/people/profile?id=37

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Martin O'Connell

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) ( email )

7 Ridgmount Street
London, WC1E 7AE
United Kingdom

Kate Smith

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) ( email )

7 Ridgmount Street
London, WC1E 7AE
United Kingdom

University College London ( email )

Gower Street
London, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

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