DP12815 How long do healthy habits last? The role of prices
|Publication Date:||March 2018|
|Keyword(s):||Consumer behavior, dietary choices, long-term policy effects|
|JEL(s):||D12, I12, I38, L66|
|Programme Areas:||Industrial Organization|
|Link to this Page:||cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=12815|
When a policy gives temporary incentives for healthy behaviors, how long does the impact last? I study the U.S. Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, which gives vouchers for healthy foods. Using household-level scanner data, I find that the effect of the program diminishes when households become ineligible. Demand model estimates show that price differences between healthy and unhealthy foods play a large role in the decrease of the program's impact. The estimates imply that the program has a persistent effect, in that it increases the impact of subsequent policies like subsidies on healthy foods.