Improving diets through food systems in low- and middle-income countries: Metrics for analysis

Taking a food systems approach is a promising strategy for improving diets. Implementing such an approach would require the use of a comprehensive set of metrics to characterize food systems, set meaningful goals, track food systems performance, and evaluate the impacts of food systems interventions. Food systems metrics are also useful to structure debates and communicate to policy makers and the general public. This paper provides an updated analytical framework of food systems and uses this to systematically identify relevant metrics and indicators based on data availability in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The list of indicators partly overlaps with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) indicators, but these do not cover all aspects of the food system.