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Labelling Genetically Modified Food: Heterogeneous Consumer Preferences and the Value of Information

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  • Wuyang Hu
  • Michele M. Veeman
  • Wiktor L. Adamowicz

Abstract

"One facet of public debate associated with genetically modified (GM) food focuses on labelling policy for products derived from GM processes. This paper reports on the analysis of effects on consumers' choices of pre-packaged sliced bread under different GM food labelling policies. Substantial heterogeneity is found to exist among consumers' tastes for various bread attributes, including the presence/absence of GM ingredients in bread products. A simulation-based bias-adjusted measure is applied to estimate the value of information, as opposed to the value of the presence or absence of GM ingredients, revealed to consumers by different labelling procedures for the GM attribute. The information that is provided in a mandatory labelling context is considerably more valued by consumers than the information provided in a voluntary labelling context. In a final section, estimated consumer benefits from labelling policies are expressed in terms of average market prices for bread products, providing a measure of benefits against which potential cost increases that may be associated with labelling policies may be compared in the context of any future benefit-cost analysis of GM labelling." Copyright 2005 Canadian Agricultural Economics Society.

Suggested Citation

  • Wuyang Hu & Michele M. Veeman & Wiktor L. Adamowicz, 2005. "Labelling Genetically Modified Food: Heterogeneous Consumer Preferences and the Value of Information," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 53(1), pages 83-102, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:canjag:v:53:y:2005:i:1:p:83-102
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