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Consumer and Market Responses to Mad-Cow Disease

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  • Schlenker, Wolfram
  • Villas-Boas, Sofia B

Abstract

We examine how consumers and financial markets in the United States react to two health warnings about mad cow disease: the first discovery of an infected cow in December 2003 and an Oprah Winfrey show on the potentially harmful effects that aired seven years earlier. Using a unique product-level scanner data set of a national grocery chain, we find a pronounced and significant reduction in beef sales following the first discovered infection, which dissipates slowly over the next three months. Cattle futures show a comparable pattern of abnormal price drops to the scanner data. Contracts with longer maturity show smaller drops, suggesting that the market anticipated the impact to be transitory. Cattle futures show abnormal price drops after the Oprah Winfrey show that are more than 50% of the drop following the 2003 discovery of an infected cow.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley in its series Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley, Working Paper Series with number qt7995j7cm.

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Date of creation: 17 Jun 2008
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Handle: RePEc:cdl:agrebk:qt7995j7cm

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Keywords: Food safety; mad cow disease; consumer behavior; scanner data; futures prices; Life Sciences;

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References

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  1. Stefano DellaVigna & Ethan Kaplan, 2007. "The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1187-1234, 08.
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  13. Crowley, Christian S.L. & Shimazaki, Yoshiaki, 2005. "Measuring the Impact of a BSE Announcement on U.S. Retail Beef Sales: A Time-Series Analysis," Journal of Agribusiness, Agricultural Economics Association of Georgia, vol. 23(1).
  14. Jay Shimshack, 2004. "Are Mercury Advisories Effective? Inofrmation, Education, and Fish Consumption," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 0423, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
  15. Dimson, Elroy & Marsh, Paul, 1986. "Event study methodologies and the size effect : The case of UK press recommendations," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 113-142, September.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Shimshack, Jay P. & Ward, Michael B., 2010. "Mercury advisories and household health trade-offs," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(5), pages 674-685, September.
  2. Schnellenbach, Jan, 2012. "Nudges and norms: On the political economy of soft paternalism," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 266-277.
  3. Moonsoo Park & Yanhong H. Jin & David A. Bessler, 2008. "The impacts of animal disease crises on the Korean meat market," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 39(2), pages 183-195, 09.
  4. Mykel R. Taylor, 2009. "Does Food Safety Information Affect Consumers' Decision to Purchase Mean and Poultry? Evidence from U.S. Household Level Data," Working Papers 2009-11, School of Economic Sciences, Washington State University.
  5. repec:ags:jrapmc:122316 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Joshua Graff Zivin & Matthew Neidell & Wolfram Schlenker, 2011. "Water Quality Violations and Avoidance Behavior: Evidence from Bottled Water Consumption," NBER Working Papers 16695, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Craig L. Garthwaite, 2012. "You Get a Book! Demand Spillovers, Combative Advertising, and Celebrity Endorsements," NBER Working Papers 17915, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Youn, Hyungho & Lim, Byung In & Jin, Hyun Joung, 2012. "Differential effects of negative publicity on beef consumption according to household characteristics in South Korea," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 106(2), pages 138-148.
  9. Pozo, Veronica F. & Schroeder, Ted C., 2013. "Effects of Meat Recalls on Firms' Stock Prices," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 151287, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  10. Colin-Castillo, Sergio & Capps, Oral, Jr. & Hernandez, Manuel A., 2012. "Do Marketing Margins Change with Food Scares? Examining the Effects of Food Recalls and Disease Outbreaks in the U.S. Red Meat Industry," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 124966, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  11. Erdem, Seda & Rigby, Dan, 2011. "Using Best Worst Scaling To Investigate Perceptions Of Control & Concern Over Food And Non-Food Risks," 85th Annual Conference, April 18-20, 2011, Warwick University, Coventry, UK 108790, Agricultural Economics Society.
  12. Hagerman, Amy D. & Jin, Yanhong H., 2009. "The Buzz In The Pits: Livestock Futures' Response To A Rumor Of Foreign Animal Disease," 2009 Annual Meeting, July 26-28, 2009, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 49493, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  13. Taylor, Mykel R. & Klaiber, H. Allen & Kuchler, Fred, 2013. "Structural Change in U.S. Consumer Response to Food Safety Recalls," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 149819, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  14. Maria De Paola & Vincenzo Scoppa, 2010. "Consumers’ Reactions To Negative Information On Product Quality: Evidence From Scanner Data," Working Papers 201012, Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza (Ex Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica).
  15. Zhen, Chen, 2009. "Long-Run Effects From Consumer Reaction To The Spread Of Foodborne Pathogens: The Case Of E. Coli Contamination Of Beef At Jack In The Box Restaurants," 2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China 51341, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
  16. Valentina G. Bruno & Bahattin Buyuksahin & Michel A. Robe, 2013. "The Financialization of Food?," Working Papers 13-39, Bank of Canada.

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