The Vegetarian Resource Group Blog

The Vegetarian Resource Group Blog

By Jeanne Yacoubou, MS

The Vegetarian Resource
Group received an email inquiry in May 2020 from a PhD student in Food,
Agriculture & Resource Economics. He asked: “…In preparing for a PhD next
year, I’m working on research around the economic impacts of plant-based diets,
e.g., consumption, production, externalities, trends, etc. Would you
have any suggestions for papers or people in this area? Insight greatly

The VRG responds:

There has been a significant
increase in the popularity of plant-based diets during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.
Many consumers are trending away from meat, partly due to a perceived shortage of
animal-based foods.

General Information on
Plant-Based Economics

Here are recent articles on
this phenomenon from Bloomberg
and Vox.

Also for background, the
World Economic Forum (WEF) published a 2018 article that contains several links to important
studies on plant-based economics.

The WEF also explores the
category it calls Agriculture,
Food, and Beverage Industries
with extensive listings of resources and

Vegan Business Resource

For a business-focused look,
Vegconomist is a
good place to start.

Historical Reference on
Plant-Based Economics

The academic journal titled Ecological
is a good source. You will find many research articles dealing
with the types of issues in plant-based economics that you’re analyzing.

Here is a
scholarly paper
by Carlsson-Kanyama, et al., titled “Food and life
cycle energy inputs: consequences of diet and ways to increase efficiency” that
provides historical perspective.

Recent Economics Research
on Plant-Based Diets

This 2016
written by M. Springmann, et al., titled “Analysis and
valuation of the health and climate change cobenefits of dietary change”
published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science,
considers economic aspects, as well health and environmental impacts, of
plant-based diets.

Here are some other
scholarly articles, all by the same research team:

Lusk & Norwood (2009) Some
economic benefits and costs of vegetarianism
published in Agricultural
and Resource Economics Review

In 2012, Lusk & Norwood
published Speciesism,
altruism and the economics of animal welfare
in the European Review of
Agricultural Economics

Along with other researchers, Lusk &
Norwood published a 2019 study in the Journal of Behavioral and Experimental
titled An experiment on the vote-buy gap with application to cage-free

This information may also be of interest.

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