NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Does Food Aid Harm the Poor? Household Evidence from Ethiopia

James Levinsohn, Margaret McMillan

NBER Working Paper No. 11048
Issued in January 2005
NBER Program(s):   ITI

This paper uses household-level data from Ethiopia to investigate the impact of food aid on the poor. We find that food aid in Ethiopia is "pro-poor." Our results indicate that (i) net buyers of wheat are poorer than net sellers of wheat, (ii) there are more buyers of wheat than sellers of wheat at all levels of income, (iii) the proportion of net sellers is increasing in living standards and (iv) net benefit ratios are higher for poorer households indicating that poorer households benefit proportionately more from a drop in the price of wheat. In light of this evidence, it appears that households at all levels of income benefit from food aid and that - somewhat surprisingly - the benefits go disproportionately to the poorest households.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w11048

Published: Does Food Aid Harm the Poor? Household Evidence from Ethiopia, James Levinsohn, Margaret McMillan. in Globalization and Poverty, Harrison. 2007

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