Can homestead gardens improve rural households' vegetable consumption? Evidence from three provinces in China

Taian Deng, Marrit van den Berg, Nico Heerink, Haoyang Cui, Fuli Tan, Shenggen Fan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Vegetables play a vital role in human health. However, the average vegetable consumption among Chinese rural residents does not meet the minimum intake (300 g/adult person/day) recommended by the Chinese Dietary Guidelines. Homestead gardening—defined as growing vegetables or other food for home consumption, usually in the backyard of the household or on collectively allocated garden land—can play a significant role in promoting vegetable consumption in rural areas of developing countries. But empirical evidence on the effects of homestead gardening in China is scarce. This paper sheds new insights on the impacts of homestead gardening on rural households' vegetable consumption. We employ the three-stage procedure instrumental variables methods to disentangle the endogeneity of the homestead garden variable and propensity score matching for robustness check. The results show that homestead gardening increases vegetable consumption by 12.7% on average. Further heterogeneous analysis shows that homestead gardening has a larger effect on those groups with vegetable intake levels in the middle of the distribution. The impact of homestead gardening was strongest for the consumption of dark-colored vegetables. Our results can provide new perspectives for future rural planning, dietary and nutritional health transformation, and precision policy formulation. [EconLit Citations: Q1, D1, Q13].

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1578-1594
Issue numberS1
Early online date11 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • homestead gardens
  • propensity score matching
  • rural China
  • three-stage procedure IV
  • vegetable consumption


Dive into the research topics of 'Can homestead gardens improve rural households' vegetable consumption? Evidence from three provinces in China'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this