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Sugar-sweetened beverage price elasticities in a hypothetical convenience store

Miranda R. Blake, Emily Lancsar, Anna Peeters and Kathryn Backholer

Social Science & Medicine, 2019, vol. 225, issue C, 98-107

Abstract: An increase in sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) prices has been suggested to reduce SSB intake to improve population health. Using a discrete choice experiment, we tested the effect of price changes on beverage choices in an online hypothetical convenience store setting amongst 1,008 Australian adults in May to June 2016. From this we calculated pre-packaged beverage price elasticities overall and for health policy-target consumer subgroups; and identified consumer subgroups likely to be most reactive to beverage price changes. Using mixed logit analysis, we found similar price elasticities for age, gender and income groups. More frequent SSB consumers tended to be less sensitive to SSB price changes. Latent class analysis revealed five consumer groups, none of which fit the desirable policy-target of highly price sensitive, frequent SSB consumers. An improved understanding of responsiveness to beverage price changes and consumer preferences could improve predictions of whose health is likely to benefit most from pricing interventions.

Keywords: Australia; Price elasticities; Sugar-sweetened beverage; Choice modelling; Public policy; Legal; Heterogeneity; Experimental economics; Consumer behaviour (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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DOI: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2019.02.021

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