Determinants and constraints of fruit and vegetable consumption in Uzbekistan (A.M. Ergashev)
Since 1991, fruit and vegetable production has been expanding in Uzbekistan. Although national supply should be sufficient for the population to receive recommended daily servings, fruit and vegetable intake remains inadequate, with a strong seasonal pattern. The horticultural supply in Uzbekistan is characterized by seasonal fluctuations which impact prices and other factors that then affect decisions on consumption. Detailed analysis of such factors was the focus of this study.
The data in this research came from a food consumption survey conducted in Tashkent province. A total of 931 people were interviewed twice – in summer 2014 and again in winter 2015. High seasonality in individual fruit and vegetable intake was confirmed by the survey data. These fluctuations resulted in variation in the nutrient content of consumed fruit and vegetables. Multiple linear regression analysis examined the relationships between various factors, with intake of horticultural products and derived nutrients examined. Amongst the adult population, regression results showed that income, food knowledge and household size had strong positive effects on fruit and vegetable intake. Across all population groups, the winter season was surprisingly positively associated with consumption, while age and price had strong negative effects. Food knowledge positively influenced nutrient intake for all population groups. Income exhibited a progressive positive effect, i.e. the richer the family, the more nutrients their members consumed by eating fruit and vegetables. Income elasticity was the strongest in infants compared to older children and adult females.
In summary, this paper confirmed the benefits of food and nutrition education among all population groups. State policy measures to combat high horticultural price fluctuations also seemed to be urgent.
A.M. Ergashev won an ISHS student award for the best oral presentation at the I International Symposium on Poverty, Hidden Hunger and Horticulture in Australia in November 2016.
A.M. Ergashev, Center for Development Research (ZEF), University of Bonn, 3 Walter-Flex Street, 53113 Bonn, Germany, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
The full article is available in Chronica Horticulturae