The Demand for Good and Calories
JOURNAL OF POLITICAL ECONOMY 104, February 1996
Posted: 15 May 2000
We investigate nutrition and expenditure in rural Maharashtra in India. We estimate that the elasticity of calorie consumption with respect to total expenditure is 0.3=9C0.5, a range that is in accord with conventional wisdom. The elasticity declines only slowly with levels of living and is far from the value of zero suggested by a recent revisionist literature. In these Indian data, the calories necessary for a day's activity cost less than 5 percent of the daily wage, which makes it implausible that income is constrained by nutrition rather than the other way around.
JEL Classification: I31, I12
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