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Downstream labeling and upstream price competition

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  • Bonroy, Olivier
  • Lemarié, Stéphane

Abstract

This paper analyses the economic consequences of labeling in a setting with two vertically related markets. Labeling on the downstream market affects upstream price competition through two effects: a differentiation effect and a ranking effect. The magnitude of these two effects determines who in the supply chain will receive the benefits and who will bear the burden of labeling. For instance, whenever the ranking effect dominates the differentiation effect, the low-quality upstream firm loses from labeling while all downstream actors are individually better off. By decreasing the low-quality input price, the label acts as a subsidy and leads to an increase of the downstream market welfare. This analysis furthers our understanding of the economic consequences of labeling in cases like those of GMOs or restaurants.

Suggested Citation

  • Bonroy, Olivier & Lemarié, Stéphane, 2012. "Downstream labeling and upstream price competition," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 347-360.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:56:y:2012:i:3:p:347-360 DOI: 10.1016/j.euroecorev.2011.10.003
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Olivier Bonroy & Christos Constantatos, 2015. "On the Economics of Labels: How Their Introduction Affects the Functioning of Markets and the Welfare of All Participants," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, pages 239-259.
    2. Emanuele Bacchiega & Olivier Bonroy, 2015. "On the benefits of contractual inefficiency in quality-differentiated markets," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(3), pages 846-863.
    3. repec:gbl:wpaper:2013-01 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. E. Bacchiega & O. Bonroy, 2012. "Vertical relations and number of channels in quality-differentiated markets," Working Papers wp823, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
    5. repec:kap:regeco:v:52:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s11149-017-9339-5 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Barry, I. & Bonroy, O. & Garella, P.G., 2015. "On taxes and subsidies with private eco-labeling," Working Papers 2015-09, Grenoble Applied Economics Laboratory (GAEL).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Label; Imperfect consumer information; Vertical product differentiation; Vertical structure; Innovation;

    JEL classification:

    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
    • L5 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy

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