Lipton (1983) defined an individual to be ‘ultrapoor’ if and only if: (i) his calorie intake falls below 0.8 of the intake appropriate for his age, sex, and activity group; and (ii) his foodshare exceeds 0.8. of the appropriate foodshare. This chapter evaluates Lipton's concept of ultrapoverty. This is done by relating it to the well-established welfare indicator ‘total expenditure’, on the one hand, and to a wide range of housing and other non-monetary indicators on the other. The chapter agues that: (i) while calorie intake does contain important poverty information, it contains less poverty information than total expenditure; and (ii) foodshare contains very little poverty information. Hence, neither of the components of Lipton's double criterion is, on its own, a good criterion for poverty. It further argues that while the double 0.8 (or ‘double-eighty’) criterion may have some merits over each of its components, it is nonetheless inferior to a poverty criterion based simply on total expenditure. A particular feature of the analysis is the chapter's use of non-parametric methods to assess the local strength of the association between calorie intake and foodshare, respectively, against total expenditure.
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