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Northern Ireland Expenditure & Food Survey (EFS). ESDS Seminar ‘Focus on Consumption’ 7 th November 2007. Introduction & Background. Expenditure & Food Survey Amalgamation of the Family Expenditure Survey (FES) and National Food Survey (NFS) First run in 2001/02 FES

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Northern ireland expenditure food survey efs

Northern Ireland Expenditure & Food Survey (EFS)

ESDS Seminar

‘Focus on Consumption’

7th November 2007


Introduction background
Introduction & Background

  • Expenditure & Food Survey

    • Amalgamation of the Family Expenditure Survey (FES) and National Food Survey (NFS)

    • First run in 2001/02

  • FES

    • Began in GB in 1957

    • Extended to NI in 1967

  • NFS

    • Began in GB in 1950

    • Extended to NI in 1996


The efs responsibilities
The EFS - responsibilities

  • The EFS is classified as a ‘National Statistic’

    • The Office for National Statistics (ONS) have overall responsibility for the EFS on a UK level

  • ONS carry out the fieldwork in GB

  • NISRA (Central Survey Unit) are responsible for:

    • NI fieldwork

    • Actioning questionnaire changes

      • to ensure the questionnaire is applicable to NI


Questionnaire development
Questionnaire Development

  • ONS are responsible for maintaining the ‘Blaise’ version of the questionnaire

  • CSU develop NI specific questions and corresponding Blaise code

    • Forwarded to ONS for inclusion in the relevant section of main questionnaire

  • Examples of NI specific questions include

    • Rates Block

    • Religious Denomination

    • Nationality

    • Ethnicity

  • Examples of NI specific question changes include

    • References to NI Housing Executive/Social Security Agency/Co-ownership


The sample design
The Sample Design

  • Great Britain

    • 12,000 households sampled each year

    • Multi-stage stratified random sample with clustering

    • Approx 6,500 co-operating households

  • Northern Ireland

    • Sample in NI is boosted to approx 5 times the level that is required for UK data

    • 1,200 households sampled each year (100 per month)

    • Systematic random sample

      • Addresses are sorted by DC and Ward

      • Sample is effectively stratified geographically

    • Approx 600 co-operating households


Survey methodology
Survey Methodology

  • Advance letter sent to all selected addresses

    • Approx one week before start of fieldwork

  • Letter states…..

    • Why we carry out the survey

    • An interviewer will be calling to their house

    • Confidentiality promise

    • Contact details for survey coordinator

  • Initial call by interviewer to establish contact with respondent(s)


Survey methodology continued
Survey Methodology continued…..

  • Interviewer establishes the number of people living at the address

  • Carry out a Household interview with the Household Reference Person (HRP)

    • Record Characteristics of Household

      • Age, Sex, Marital Status, Relationships, Ethnicity, Tenure, etc

    • Record Information on Regular Expenditure

      • Rents, Mortgage payments, Electricity, Gas, Telephone, etc

  • Identify Main Diary Keeper (MDK)

    • Record expenditure details for large, rarely purchased items (e.g. tv’s cars, etc)


Survey methodology continued1
Survey Methodology continued…..

  • Income Section

    • All adults in the household (aged 16yrs +)

      • Employment Status and job description

      • Detailed income questions

        • Records information on individual incomes from all sources (e.g. Employment, Benefits, Pensions, etc)

    • ‘Short income’ section option

      • Invoked if respondent reluctant to give full income details

      • Designed to collect the minimum amount of income information necessary to ensure interview is productive


Survey methodology continued2
Survey Methodology continued…..

  • Diaries

    • Adult Diary is offered to ALL adults aged 16 and over

    • Young Person’s Diary given to ALL those aged 7-15

    • Respondents record all personal expenditure each day for 2 weeks

      • Food & drink

      • Clothing & footwear

      • Recreation

      • Transport


Survey methodology continued3
Survey Methodology continued…..

  • Our aim is to obtain a ‘Fully Co-operating’ household at each address that agrees to take part

    • Full household questionnaire

    • Full income details for all adults (16yrs +)

    • Diaries for all adults (16 yrs +)

    • Diaries for all children (aged 7-15yrs)

  • We don’t need agreement of everyone in the household prior to starting any interviewing

    • Some imputation of missing information may occur at the coding stage in specific cases


Efs incentives
EFS – Incentives

  • Book of 6 postage stamps enclosed with each advance letter

    • Research on FRS indicated that this could boost response by as much as 3%

  • High Street Vouchers

    • Each adult in household who completes a diary receives £20

    • Each child (aged 7 -15) in household who completes a diary receives £5

    • Discretionary £20 ‘buddy’ payment to friend or relative who helps with dairy completion


Coding and quality control
Coding and Quality Control

  • Extensive coding and editing operation

    • Interviewers and office staff check for inconsistencies in diaries

      • Any irregularities are followed up with respondents

        • Through checking/follow-up calls

      • Shop visits made to record missing weights

    • Office staff code Industry (SIC) and Occupation (SOC)

    • Coded (clean) data sent to ONS on a weekly basis


Coding and quality control1
Coding and Quality Control

  • All diaries are forwarded to ONS within 2 weeks of end of fieldwork period

  • ONS code each individual item of expenditure recorded in the diaries

    • Description

    • Where purchased

    • Weight/Volume

    • Price

  • Any discrepancies are flagged and returned to us for investigation


Efs data
EFS Data

  • UK EFS database compiled

    • Figures presented in annual ‘Family Spending’ publication

  • NI EFS database forwarded to CSU for NI level analysis

  • UK data on food expenditure passed to DEFRA for consumption and nutrition analysis

    • DEFRA also produce NI level data on consumption and nutrition

    • Published on DARD website

  • ‘Anonymised’ EFS databases deposited annually on UK Data Archive website


Ni efs the future
NI EFS – The Future

  • Contributions from various NI Government Departments enable us to ‘boost’ the NI sample

    • 5 times larger than that required for UK data

    • Enables us to run robust expenditure/consumption analysis by various demographics

  • Recent funding decisions at Departmental level has put the future of the ‘boosted’ NI sample in jeopardy

    • Currently planning to revert to a ‘core’ EFS sample in NI from Jan 2008 unless an alternative funding stream can be found

      • Core sample would mean that separate analysis of EFS data NI level would not be possible from 2008