Understanding Scotland Economy Tracker – August 2023

Think tank: The David Hume Institute

Author(s): Various authors

August 29, 2023

This report from UK think tank the David Hume Institute looks at the economic outlook for Scots.

The most recent data from the David Hume Institute and Diffley Partnership’s regular economy tracker reveals a mixed picture of public opinion on the economy.

Research shows extreme cost-saving behaviours in how Scots shop, eat and live are likely to have a disastrous long-term effect on the nation’s health.

Rising cost of living continues to dominate people’s priorities. Around half (48%) say this is a top issue facing Scotland. Two-thirds (67%) say this is a top issue for the Scottish economy.

In response, Scots report that they are shopping around, changing brands or shops, and buying reduced food to cope with rising prices.

But many are engaging in extreme cost-saving behaviours, which may have disastrous health consequences:

  • 1 in 7 (15%) are skipping meals
  • 1 in 4 (24%) are buying fewer fruits and vegetables
  • 1 in 4 (25%) are choosing foods that require no or little cooking such as pot noodles
  • More than 1 in 4 (27%) are consuming more packaged or processed foods instead of fresh alternatives.