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Effects of media headlines on consumer preferences for food safety, quality and environmental attributes


  • David L. Ortega
  • H. Holly Wang
  • Nicole J. Olynk Widmar


type="main" xml:id="ajar12097-abs-0001"> In recent years, Asia has emerged as an important supplier of food to Western countries. In this study, we focus on shrimp, a major aquaculture commodity, to evaluate consumer willingness-to-pay (WTP) for enhanced food safety, use of antibiotics and eco-friendly practices used in producing shrimp in the presence of country-of-origin labelling. Specifically, this research assesses the effects of news headlines regarding product safety, as information shocks on U.S. consumer demand. Consumers were found to have a mean willingness-to-pay of $7.81 per pound of shrimp with an enhanced safety characteristic from the United States, $0.94 for the same type of shrimp from China and $2.43 for similar shrimp from Thailand. Consumers had a WTP for the absence of antibiotics in the production of U.S. shrimp of $7.31 and were only willing to pay for an eco-friendly attribute on domestically produced shrimp. Media headlines were found to have a statistically significant effect on consumer preferences and WTP for product characteristics. Food policy and international agribusiness implications of our findings are discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • David L. Ortega & H. Holly Wang & Nicole J. Olynk Widmar, 2015. "Effects of media headlines on consumer preferences for food safety, quality and environmental attributes," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 59(3), pages 433-445, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ajarec:v:59:y:2015:i:3:p:433-445

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    Cited by:

    1. H. Holly Wang & Paul Gardner de Beville, 2017. "The media impact of animal disease on the US meat demand," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 33(4), pages 493-504, September.
    2. Chen, Junhong & Wang, H. Holly & Bai, Junfei & Lai, John, 2017. "Consumers’ Willingness-to-Pay of Different Pork Preservation Methods in Chinese Retail Market," 2017 Annual Meeting, July 30-August 1, Chicago, Illinois 257247, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.

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