Food Environments Food affordability

Cost of a nutrient adequate diet


Cost of nutrient adequacy uses linear programming to determine the lowest cost diet that adheres to nutrient constraints, including the estimated average requirement of essential nutrients as well as upper limits of toxicity, energy balance (for a healthy adult woman), and macronutrient distribution ranges.


Cost of the least expensive locally-available foods for nutrient adequacy, in 2017 PPP$/person/day, for a representative person within upper and lower bounds for 23 essential macro- and micronutrients plus energy balance at 2330 kcal/day. Data available for 2017.


The cost of food can present a significant barrier to consumption of nutritious diets by restricting economic access to nutritious food. Nutrient-dense vegetables and animal-source foods especially are less easily traded compared to starchy staples and CoNA may therefore reflect the efficiency of local food supply chains and retail markets in their prices. Note that to understand affordability, CoNA as a percent of average household food expenditure is more informative.