[Price evolution of foods and nutriments in Mexico from 1973 to 2004]
Sommaire de l'article
The aim of this study was to know the price changes of foods and nutriments in Mexico during the last three decades. To this end, two sets of data were analyzed: the National Consumer Prices Index for 1973 to 2003, and quotations of food prices for 1990, 1995, 2000 and 2004. Cost estimates were calculated for 100 kcal, 10 g of saturated fat, 100 mg of cholesterol, 10 g of fiber and 1 mg of iron. Regression models were used to analyze the association between nutrient and energy's costs and energetic and nutrimental densities. Our results lead to infer that that in Mexico, the structure of foods prices differed between the eighties and the nineties decades. In the former, vegetables and corn and wheat derived foods had the lowest price increment, whereas their price had the largest increment in the following decade. On the other hand, the prices of fresh meat of cattle and pig, and of fish and seafood rose during the eighties but became cheaper during the nineties. The differences in prices of the meat are inversely related to their energy density and nutrimental value: lean meat became more expensive that those with more fat (i.e., more energy and cholesterol). Canned fish (tuna and sardine), eggs and poultry became cheaper at the turn of the eighties. The prices of the majority of oils and fats have increased less than the inflation of the group of food. Processed and industrialized foods became cheaper than the fresh ones. The energy density of the foods is negatively correlated to their cost. The implications of our results are discussed in terms of public policies.