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A Supermarket-Level Analysis of Demand for Breakfast Cereals: A Random Coefficients Approach

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  • Chidmi, Benaissa
  • Lopez, Rigoberto A.
  • Cotterill, Ronald W.

Abstract

This paper applies the BLP approach to the demand for ready-to-eat cereals (RTECs) at the supermarket-chain level in Boston using IRI monthly data. The Random Coefficient Model is used to estimate the demand for 37 brands of RTECs at the leading supermarkets in the Boston area. The empirical results provide a wealth of consumer behavior information, including own- and cross-price elasticites for 37 brands of RTECs at four leading supermarkets in Boston. The demand for RTECs is generally price elastic (ranging between -3 and -8). Consumers respond positively and strongly to promotion, negatively and strongly to price, calories and fiber, and weakly to sugar content. Income has a strong interactive effect with product characteristics and thus is a useful variable for market segmentation. In comparison, the results with the more commonly used Logit model indicate significantly lower price elasticities, provide a limited window on consumer behavior, and yield predicted brand and supermarket market shares that are quite divergent from observed values.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association) in its series 2005 Annual meeting, July 24-27, Providence, RI with number 19236.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea05:19236

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Keywords: Demand and Price Analysis;

References

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  1. Stanley, Linda R & Tschirhart, John, 1991. "Hedonic Prices for a Nondurable Good: The Case of Breakfast Cereals," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(3), pages 537-41, August.
  2. Steven T. Berry, 1994. "Estimating Discrete-Choice Models of Product Differentiation," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 25(2), pages 242-262, Summer.
  3. Wagner A. Kamakura & Byung-Do Kim & Jonathan Lee, 1996. "Modeling Preference and Structural Heterogeneity in Consumer Choice," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 15(2), pages 152-172.
  4. Nevo, Aviv, 1999. "Measuring Market Power in the Ready-to-Eat Cereal Industry," Competition Policy Center, Working Paper Series qt7cm5p858, Competition Policy Center, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  5. John M. Connor, 1996. "Breakfast Cereals: The Extreme Food Industry," Issue Papers 12, University of Connecticut, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Charles J. Zwick Center for Food and Resource Policy.
  6. Daniel McFadden & Kenneth Train, 2000. "Mixed MNL models for discrete response," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(5), pages 447-470.
  7. Aviv Nevo, 2000. "A Practitioner's Guide to Estimation of Random-Coefficients Logit Models of Demand," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 9(4), pages 513-548, December.
  8. Berry, Steven & Levinsohn, James & Pakes, Ariel, 1995. "Automobile Prices in Market Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 841-90, July.
  9. Ronald W. Cotterill, 1999. "Jawboning cereal: The campaign to lower cereal prices," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(2), pages 197-205.
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