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Field Guides to Food

Price and Label Changes and Purchasing Behavior in a Hospital Cafeteria (summary & metadata)

From the introduction & conclusions:
While a number of informational sources with ideas on how to make a food program more sustainable exist, implementing such changes is more difficult for hospitals. There is a need for more information and assistance on the actual process of implementing sustainable practice, and thus documenting how changes to institutional food systems are implemented will help other hospitals create healthier, more sustainable food systems... Changes in food supply and variety, provision of nutritional information at point of sale, nutrition policies and price incentives are among the interventions that have shown some success. This is the first study to examine the impact of pricing strategies and labeling in a health care setting...
Results from this study indicate that learning what is local, procuring it, preparing it, and the subsequent need to update contractual obligations in response were challenges and also time intensive... Overall, there appears to be substantial price sensitivity for organic, local and healthier food items with stronger quantity changes when food labels are added to the price manipulations. This suggests that food labeling at the point of purchase could be used along with taxes and subsidies to change food purchasing behavior.

Quick Facts:

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(ID# 2003)

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