Paying the price for environmentally sustainable and healthy EU diets

Catharina Latka*, Marijke Kuiper, Stefan Frank, Thomas Heckelei, Petr Havlík, Heinz Peter Witzke, Adrian Leip, Hao David Cui, Anneleen Kuijsten, Johanna M. Geleijnse, Michiel van Dijk

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


We review consumer-side interventions and their effectiveness to support a transition to healthier and more environmentally sustainable diets and identify taxes/subsidies as relevant instruments. To quantify the scope of necessary tax levels to achieve dietary recommendations on EU average, we apply three established economic models. Our business-as-usual food intake projections stress the need for policy intervention to resolve continued divergence from nutrition guidelines. Our findings suggest that food group specific taxes are effective in reaching nutrition and environmental sustainability targets. However, considerable tax levels are required to achieve the targeted consumption shifts, inducing a discussion about alternative policy designs and current model limitations. A coherent policy package is suggested to approach nutrition and sustainability objectives simultaneously.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100437
JournalGlobal Food Security
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


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