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Household Consumption and Expenditure Surveys

Understanding food consumption patterns and nutrient intakes is essential for informing evidence-based food and nutrition policies, yet there is a lack of accurate and reliable data. Household Consumption and Expenditure Surveys (HCES)—a collective term for multipurpose household surveys—provide an inexpensive and readily available source for filling this information gap.

HCES may be a practical instrument for enacting national policies and identifying communities where nutrition interventions are highly needed. Combined with other tools, HCES can approximate nutrient intake patterns and the probable prevalence of inadequacies, assess diet quality and nutrient density, and measure dietary diversity at national and subnational levels.

SPRING is continuing to work with USAID and partner organizations to repurpose HCES to make them more attuned to countries’ nutrition policy needs and strategies. Through active involvement of the international food and nutrition community, HCES can be better adapted to monitor and assess the coverage and impact of a variety of interventions, and accelerate global progress in improving nutrition.

To learn more about HCES, read this primer: Household Consumption and Expenditures Surveys (HCES): A Primer for Food and Nutrition Analysts in Low- and Middle-income Countries