High price, low quality make people shun fruit: Study

High price, low quality make people shun fruit: Study

Low consumption of fruit and vegetables in the country is mainly due to doubts over their quality and higher price tag, a survey has found.

The survey by Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations found that upper and middle income Indians consumed 3.5 portions of fruits and vegetables on average as against the recommended World Health Organisation average of five servings of 80 grams each.

Consumption pattern is heavily skewed towards cereals, while fruits and vegetables accounted for a mere nine per cent calorie intake, the survey, titled ‘India’s Phytonutrient Report’, said.

“Consumers participating in the survey raised concerns about the quality of fresh and processed vegetables … there are hardly any checks on the type of insecticides and pesticides used at the farm level,” the report said.

It showed that people in southern cities of Chennai and Hyderabad were consuming more fruits and vegetables than those up north. The survey was held across the National Capital Region, Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad and Kolkata.

It said intake was far lower among Gen-Y, with those between 18 and 25 consuming just 2.97 servings of fruits and vegetables per day.

“The average intake among students is abysmally low at 2.94 servings per day,” said Arpita Mukherjee, a professor in ICRIER and the lead author of the Report.

IT found variation in consumption patterns across diet types, with  a person following Jain diet taking 3.97 servings of fruits and vegetables daily, while it is 3.87 servings for a vegetarian, 3.43 servings for an eggetarian and 3.2 servings for a non-vegetarian.

“In spite of the shortfall in consumption of fruits and vegetables, most Indians do not take health and nutritional supplements,” the survey found. It recommends for a series of reforms in farm and retail sectors, besides spreading awareness of the benefits of processed fruits and vegetables.
DH News Service

Health check
 People in southern cities of Chennai and Hyderabad were consuming more fruit and vegetables than those up north.
Consumption pattern is heavily skewed towards cereals, while fruit and vegetables accounted for a mere nine per cent calorie intake, the survey, titled ‘India’s Phytonutrient Report’, said.
It said intake was far lower among Gen-Y, with those between 18 and 25 consuming just 2.97 servings of fruit and vegetables per day.
In spite of the shortfall in consumption of fruit and vegetables, most Indians do not take health and nutritional supplements

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