COVID-19 Disruptions and Resilience of Retail Food Prices Around the World

COVID-19 Disruptions and Resilience of Retail Food Prices Around the World

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Sub Editor


William Masters


This project uses new price indexes to conduct nearly real-time monitoring of retail prices by food group and nutrient composition, measuring month-to-month changes in the cost and affordability of nutritious diets in various countries. We use software tools and data developed from a project funded by UKAid and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation entitled Changing Access to Nutritious Diets in Africa and South Asia (CANDASA): The CANDASA project’s new aims related to COVID-19 are: (1) Obtain monthly updates for item-level food prices from as many countries as possible; (2) Match items to nutrient composition and foodgroup to compute diet costs; (3) Compute cost-of-diet indexes by food group and for nutrient adequacy monthly for each location; (4) Identify price spikes that signal supply chain failures, and price declines that would signal loss of income and effective demand,as anomalies relative to the spatio-temporal price surface observed in previous years; (5) Match food price anomalies to the timing, location and severity of COVID outbreaks, to identify conditions that make retail food prices more or less resilient to COVID-related disruption.

Project Outcomes of Interest

Price indexes by food group to track cost and affordability of nutritious diets over time and space; identifying temporal and spatial anomalies as near real-time indicators of supply disruption, loss of income, or other shocks


IFPRI, World Bank, World Food Programme

Impact Goals

  • Build resilience and protect the financial health of families and individuals
  • Build resilient and adaptable businesses and employment opportunities
  • Improve social-safety net responses
  • Improve women’s health, safety, and economic empowerment
  • Keep children safe, healthy, and learning

Project Data Collection Mode

  • Web

Link to Public Data

Implementing Organization

Tufts University

Results Status

No Results Yet