Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Paper Series,
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department Economics

No 2015:3: Distributional effects of environmental meat taxes in Sweden- Can the poor still eat meat?

Sarah Säll ()
Additional contact information
Sarah Säll: Department of Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Postal: Department of Economics, Box 7013, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden

Abstract: This paper looks at the distributional effect of an environmental tax on meat in Sweden, if such a tax was to be introduced. Welfare effects are measured as Compensation Variation (CV) for multiple price changes where Hicksian cross price elasticities, household expenditures and price changes are used in the calculations. Results show that taxes on meat are neutral over households when expenditures on meat are used as welfare indicators, and regressive if income is used. This can be explained as households use similar shares of total expenditures on meat. The households with the smallest income levels need to be compensated with 950 SEK per person and year to feel that utility is not lowered if taxes on meat are introduced, and the households with the highest income levels need to be compensated with 1176 SEK per person and year. This corresponds to 0.78% and 0.80% of total expenditures for the groups respectively. Compared to income levels this is 1.04% for the households with the smallest income levels and 0.52% for the households with the largest income.

Keywords: Meat taxes; Distributional effects; Compensating Variation; Sweden

JEL-codes: D12; D60; Q18; Q50; Q58

18 pages, February 12, 2015

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Distrib_eff_of_environm_meat_taxes_Sall.S.pdf  

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