Butter
Butter iStock

As part of an ongoing effort to change Israelis' eating habits, the Health Ministry has recommended changes to the list of price-controlled foods, Calcalist reported.

According to Calcalist, a survey done at the request of MK Miki Haimovich (Blue and White) showed that the Health Ministry recommended removing price controls from nine foods which are not considered healthy, such as butter, yellow cheese, and cream.

However, it also recommended setting price controls for 14 other foods which are considered healthier, including various fruits and vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts, raw tahini, olive oil, fish, and more. The Ministry attempted four years ago to place price controls on some of these foods, but did not succeed due to opposition from the Finance Ministry.

The Agriculture and Economy ministries have also noted that placing price controls on a food does not necessarily mean that prices for those foods will drop. The Agriculture Ministry also noted that health considerations are not one of the reasons listed in the law which allows price controls.

For its part, the Finance Ministry sees price controls as a way to handle market failures which may skew prices, not as a way to encourage health.

Meanwhile, the Health Ministry has said that the reason changes have not been made is that "the committee...is not interested in changing or expanding the food basket" and that the list of "basic" foods which receive price controls has not been updated in accordance with newer research on nutrition. The Health Ministry also emphasized that limiting the price of healthy foods helps ensure that they are affordable for everyone.

Did you find a mistake in the article or inappropriate advertisement? Report to us