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Consumer Impact of Animal Welfare Regulation in the California Poultry Industry

Author

Listed:
  • Allender, William J.
  • Richards, Timothy J.

Abstract

This study examines the consumer welfare impact of animal welfare legislation mandating cage-free egg production in California. We estimate California egg consumers’ willingness to pay (WTP) for cage-free eggs using household-level purchase data and compare the implied premium to higher production costs when calculating the potential change in consumer surplus. Our findings suggest that larger households and/or households with limited means are most likely to be affected. Furthermore, the implied welfare loss for consumers is approximately $106 million. Although consumers value cage-free eggs, higher production costs result in a net welfare loss to consumers. One implication of this finding is that a clear labeling practice may be a more efficient way to motivate animal welfare and non-cage systems.

Suggested Citation

  • Allender, William J. & Richards, Timothy J., 2010. "Consumer Impact of Animal Welfare Regulation in the California Poultry Industry," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 35(3), December.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:jlaare:97856
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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/97856
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Laura Mørch Andersen, 2011. "Animal Welfare and Eggs – Cheap Talk or Money on the Counter?," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 62(3), pages 565-584, September.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Francisco Alex J. & Bruce Jared M. & Lim Seung-Lark & Bruce Amanda S. & Crespi John M. & Lusk Jayson L. & McFadden Brandon & Aupperle Robin L., 2015. "Are Consumers as Constrained as Hens are Confined? Brain Activations and Behavioral Choices after Informational Influence," Journal of Agricultural & Food Industrial Organization, De Gruyter, vol. 13(1), pages 113-119, January.
    2. Heng, Yan & Peterson, Hikaru Hanawa & Li, Xianghong, 2012. "Consumers’ Preferences for Shell Eggs Regarding Laying Hen Welfare," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 124592, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    3. Heng, Yan & Hanawa Peterson, Hikaru & Li, Xianghong, 2013. "Consumer Attitudes toward Farm-Animal Welfare: The Case of Laying Hens," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 38(3), December.
    4. Malone, Trey & Lusk, Jayson L., 2016. "Putting the Chicken Before the Egg Price: An Ex Post Analysis of California's Battery Cage Ban," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 41(3), September.

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