Health Star Rating (HSR) label impact on food formulation and consumer purchasing

Project Details

In 2014 Australia and New Zealand adopted a new voluntary, interpretive front-of-pack nutrition labelling system, the Health Star Rating (HSR), ranging from half a star (least healthy) to five stars (most healthy).

HSR Image

The adoption of the HSR has created a natural experiment that could have important effects on population diets. This project is world-leading because we have comprehensive data to estimate the impact on:

  • reformulation of all packaged foods (not just a select sample) using annually collected data on food composition in both Australia and New Zealand
  • household food purchasing behavior using New Zealand HomeScan panel data from Nielsen NZ.

The project will used econometric methods – specifically fixed effects.  Having completed the analyses of HSR, we will turn our attention to other arising natural experiments in food policy.

This project is part of the DIET Programme hosted by the University of Auckland.



Research Group

Population Interventions

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Prevention and management of non-communicable diseases (including cancer), and promotion of mental health, Data science, health metrics and disease modeling

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre

Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics

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