Food is an essential good, and thus understanding its demand is important for the formulation of sound agricultural policies and developing sustainable agricultural business. A timely analysis of food demand is important because it can change over time not only because prices and incomes change but also because people’s taste itself also change. However, even in countries where food accounts for a sizable share of expenditure or where the agricultural sector accounts for a large share of output, careful analysis of food demand is often not readily available. In this study, we analyze the food demand in urban Philippines and compare it to the one in China. This comparison is interesting for two reasons. First, there are some similarities between Filipino and Chinese food cultures. This is not surprising, because Filipino cuisine has been significantly influenced by Chinese cuisine. The similarities are particularly pronounced in lower- and middle-class cuisine because the Chinese first came as traders, settlers, and merchants. For example, dishes like noodles, certain sausages, vegetables wrapped in a thin rice wrapper, and meat encased in dough come from the Chinese cuisine and have been widely absorbed in the Filipino cuisine and cooked in homes and eateries (see Fernandez 1986). Second, the economic growth in China has been much faster than the Philippines in recent years. For example, according to the World Development Indicators published by the World Bank, China’s GDP per capita in constant 2011 international dollars is $1554 in 1990 and $9230 in 2010. The corresponding figures for the Philippines are $4010 in 1990 and $5613 in 2010. Therefore, we may expect to see more pronounced changes in China than in the Philippines over the last two decades or so.
Agricultural and Resource Economics | International Economics
Chinese global production networks in ASEAN
Is urban food demand in the Philippines different from China?. (2016). Chinese global production networks in ASEAN. 97-118. Research Collection School Of Economics.
Available at: http://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/soe_research/2136
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