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Industry-mandated testing to improve food safety: the new US marketing order for pistachios


  • Brunke, Henrich
  • Alston, Julian M.
  • Gray, Richard S.
  • Sumner, Daniel A.


Food safety shocks can threaten the health of consumers, create havoc within an industry and result in severe losses to producers. Governments often attempt to aid food safety by mandating standards and inspection of food products to supplement the efforts by private firms and industries. This article assesses a form of collective action that falls between typical government mandates and purely private action. The California pistachio industry recently established a U.S. federal marketing order, which sets quality standards and inspection to reduce the likelihood of dangerous or poor quality pistachios. Simulation results indicate that, across the full range of parameters used in the analysis, the benefit-cost analysis was always favorable to the new policy. In the case of California pistachios, collective action is likely to be a helpful tool to ensure a safe product and increase benefits to producers and consumers.

Suggested Citation

  • Brunke, Henrich & Alston, Julian M. & Gray, Richard S. & Sumner, Daniel A., 2004. "Industry-mandated testing to improve food safety: the new US marketing order for pistachios," German Journal of Agricultural Economics, Humboldt-Universitaet zu Berlin, Department for Agricultural Economics, vol. 53(8).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:gjagec:97502

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    Cited by:

    1. Niloofar Ashktorab & Sayed Hossein Saghaian & Naser Shahnoushi, 2013. "Food Safety Concerns and other Factors Affecting Iran's Pistachio Exports to EU, Australia, and Japan," Asian Journal of Agriculture and Development, Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA), vol. 10(2), pages 95-105, December.
    2. Rejesus, Roderick M. & Safley, Charles D. & Strik, Bernadine C, 2014. "Demand and Welfare Impacts of a Potential Food Safety Event in the Blackberry Industry," 2014 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2014, Minneapolis, Minnesota 169452, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    3. Zheng, Zijuan & Saghaian, Sayed H. & Reed, Michael R., 2012. "Factors Affecting the Export Demand for U.S. Pistachios," International Food and Agribusiness Management Review, International Food and Agribusiness Management Association (IFAMA), vol. 15(3).


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