Expert views on most suitable monetary incentives on food to stimulate healthy eating

Wilma E Waterlander, Ingrid H M Steenhuis, Emely de Vet, A.J. Schuit, Jacob C Seidell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)



Pricing strategies are an important component in the marketing mix and may also be useful in stimulating healthier food choices. However, due to competing interests and feasibility problems, the introduction of pricing strategies is complicated. For successfully introducing food pricing strategies, it is essential to explore incentives that are not only promising but also realizable and being approved by different sectors.


We aimed to assemble a list of pricing strategies by exploring expert views using the Delphi method. Subjects included experts from academia, industry, retail, agriculture, policymakers, consumers and non-governmental organizations. Data were collected in three rounds. In round one, experts designed promising pricing strategies. Based on a time-budget model incorporating Sleep, Leisure, Occupation, Transportation and Home-based activities, these strategies were in the subsequent rounds judged on several criteria. Results were analysed using median and interquartile deviations scores.


We found fair consensus levels among experts and a varied list of promising pricing strategies. The panel agreed on the potential success of offering small presents, providing price-cuts on healthy foods and discounting healthier foods more frequently. Also, it was found that experts gave higher rates to pricing strategies for which the implementation responsibilities could be placed elsewhere.


The resulted list of promising monetary incentives is an essential first step for the future design of pricing strategies. Following this study, it is important to determine how to make solid agreements on responsibility and implementation issues. Also, consumer perceptions regarding the proposed pricing strategies should be studied.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)325-331
JournalEuropean Journal of Public Health
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Adult
  • Commerce
  • Delphi Technique
  • Eating
  • Female
  • Food
  • Food Preferences
  • Food, Organic
  • Health Promotion
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Psychometrics
  • Reward
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't


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