IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/jeborg/v158y2019icp475-486.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The preference for sustainable coffee and a new approach for dealing with hypothetical bias

Author

Listed:
  • Wuepper, David
  • Clemm, Alexandra
  • Wree, Philipp

Abstract

There is a large literature on the effects of sustainability labels. However, much of this research is based on stated preference methods, thus hypothetical bias must be dealt with. Hypothetical bias can be defined as the difference between stated, hypothetical behavior and actual behavior in the real market. We conducted an online choice experiment with coffees, of which some were labeled as water saving. To mitigate hypothetical bias, we used “cheap talk”. We find a statistically significant effect of a 6% higher choice probability and €1.30 higher willingness to pay for labeled coffee. However, we also implemented the water label in a real online shop, and we do not find this effect. Assuming that hypothetical bias especially affects individuals who are more concerned about their appearance and who lack self-control, we augment our baseline models with interaction terms, estimating separate coefficients for respondents who differ in their concern for appearance and strength of self-control. This approach reveals the hypothetical bias and it controls it away. We propose that our interaction terms are a simple robustness check that complements existing approaches to deal with hypothetical bias.

Suggested Citation

  • Wuepper, David & Clemm, Alexandra & Wree, Philipp, 2019. "The preference for sustainable coffee and a new approach for dealing with hypothetical bias," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 158(C), pages 475-486.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:158:y:2019:i:c:p:475-486
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2018.12.012
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167268118303433
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Rodolfo M. Nayga, Jr. & Ximing Wu & Robert G. Brummett, 2007. "On the Use of Cheap Talk in New Product Valuation," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 2(1), pages 1-9.
    2. Larson, Bruce A., 2003. "Eco-labels for credence attributes: the case of shade-grown coffee," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 8(03), pages 529-547, July.
    3. Hudson, Darren & Gallardo, Rosa Karina & Hanson, Terrill R., 2012. "A Comparison Of Choice Experiments And Actual Grocery Store Behavior: An Empirical Application To Seafood Products," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Southern Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 44(1), pages 1-14, February.
    4. Ladenburg, Jacob & Olsen, Søren Bøye, 2014. "Augmenting short Cheap Talk scripts with a repeated Opt-Out Reminder in Choice Experiment surveys," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 39-63.
    5. Denzil G. Fiebig & Michael P. Keane & Jordan Louviere & Nada Wasi, 2010. "The Generalized Multinomial Logit Model: Accounting for Scale and Coefficient Heterogeneity," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 29(3), pages 393-421, 05-06.
    6. Jayson L. Lusk, 2003. "Effects of Cheap Talk on Consumer Willingness-to-Pay for Golden Rice," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 85(4), pages 840-856.
    7. Bosworth Ryan & Taylor Laura O., 2012. "Hypothetical Bias in Choice Experiments: Is Cheap Talk Effective at Eliminating Bias on the Intensive and Extensive Margins of Choice?," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 12(1), pages 1-28, December.
    8. Jacquemet, Nicolas & Joule, Robert-Vincent & Luchini, Stéphane & Shogren, Jason F., 2013. "Preference elicitation under oath," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 110-132.
    9. Carlsson, Fredrik & Martinsson, Peter, 2001. "Do Hypothetical and Actual Marginal Willingness to Pay Differ in Choice Experiments?: Application to the Valuation of the Environment," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 179-192, March.
    10. Train,Kenneth E., 2009. "Discrete Choice Methods with Simulation," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521766555.
    11. Jason F. Shogren & John A. Fox & Dermot J. Hayes & Jutta Roosen, 1999. "Observed Choices for Food Safety in Retail, Survey, and Auction Markets," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1192-1199.
    12. James Murphy & P. Allen & Thomas Stevens & Darryl Weatherhead, 2005. "A Meta-analysis of Hypothetical Bias in Stated Preference Valuation," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 30(3), pages 313-325, March.
    13. Laura O. Taylor & Ronald G. Cummings, 1999. "Unbiased Value Estimates for Environmental Goods: A Cheap Talk Design for the Contingent Valuation Method," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 649-665, June.
    14. Vossler, Christian A. & Watson, Sharon B., 2013. "Understanding the consequences of consequentiality: Testing the validity of stated preferences in the field," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 86(C), pages 137-147.
    15. Carlsson, Fredrik & Frykblom, Peter & Johan Lagerkvist, Carl, 2005. "Using cheap talk as a test of validity in choice experiments," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 89(2), pages 147-152, November.
    16. Hanley, Nick & Mourato, Susana & Wright, Robert E, 2001. " Choice Modelling Approaches: A Superior Alternative for Environmental Valuation?," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(3), pages 435-462, July.
    17. Uchida, Hirotsugu & Onozaka, Yuko & Morita, Tamaki & Managi, Shunsuke, 2014. "Demand for ecolabeled seafood in the Japanese market: A conjoint analysis of the impact of information and interaction with other labels," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 68-76.
    18. Vossler, Christian A. & Evans, Mary F., 2009. "Bridging the gap between the field and the lab: Environmental goods, policy maker input, and consequentiality," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 338-345, November.
    19. Muhammad Bello & Awudu Abdulai, 2016. "Impact of Ex-Ante Hypothetical Bias Mitigation Methods on Attribute Non-Attendance in Choice Experiments," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 98(5), pages 1486-1506.
    20. Kenneth E. Train, 1998. "Recreation Demand Models with Taste Differences over People," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 74(2), pages 230-239.
    21. Jayson L. Lusk & Ted C. Schroeder, 2004. "Are Choice Experiments Incentive Compatible? A Test with Quality Differentiated Beef Steaks," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 86(2), pages 467-482.
    22. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:2:y:2007:i:1:p:1-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. F. Bailey Norwood & Jayson L. Lusk, 2011. "Social Desirability Bias in Real, Hypothetical, and Inferred Valuation Experiments," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 93(2), pages 528-534.
    24. Champ, Patricia A. & Bishop, Richard C. & Brown, Thomas C. & McCollum, Daniel W., 1997. "Using Donation Mechanisms to Value Nonuse Benefits from Public Goods," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 151-162, June.
    25. Loureiro, Maria L. & Lotade, Justus, 2005. "Do fair trade and eco-labels in coffee wake up the consumer conscience?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 129-138, April.
    26. Glenn Harrison, 2006. "Experimental Evidence on Alternative Environmental Valuation Methods," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 34(1), pages 125-162, May.
    27. Stephen G. Donald & Kevin Lang, 2007. "Inference with Difference-in-Differences and Other Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(2), pages 221-233, May.
    28. Jean‐Pierre Dubé & Günter J. Hitsch & Peter E. Rossi, 2010. "State dependence and alternative explanations for consumer inertia," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 41(3), pages 417-445, September.
    29. Van Loo, Ellen J. & Caputo, Vincenzina & Nayga, Rodolfo M. & Seo, Han-Seok & Zhang, Baoyue & Verbeke, Wim, 2015. "Sustainability labels on coffee: Consumer preferences, willingness-to-pay and visual attention to attributes," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 118(C), pages 215-225.
    30. repec:oup:erevae:v:45:y:2018:i:5:p:749-782. is not listed on IDEAS
    31. Grunert, Klaus G. & Hieke, Sophie & Wills, Josephine, 2014. "Sustainability labels on food products: Consumer motivation, understanding and use," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 177-189.
    32. Steven D. Levitt & John A. List, 2007. "What Do Laboratory Experiments Measuring Social Preferences Reveal About the Real World?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(2), pages 153-174, Spring.
    33. John Loomis, 2011. "What'S To Know About Hypothetical Bias In Stated Preference Valuation Studies?," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(2), pages 363-370, April.
    34. Rosalie Viney & Elizabeth Savage & Jordan Louviere, 2005. "Empirical investigation of experimental design properties of discrete choice experiments in health care," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(4), pages 349-362.
    35. Jayson L. Lusk & F. Bailey Norwood, 2005. "Effect of Experimental Design on Choice-Based Conjoint Valuation Estimates," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 87(3), pages 771-785.
    36. Lusk, Jayson L. & Norwood, F. Bailey, 2009. "Bridging the gap between laboratory experiments and naturally occurring markets: An inferred valuation method," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 236-250, September.
    37. Tiziana de-Magistris & Azucena Gracia & Rodolfo M. Nayga, 2013. "On the Use of Honesty Priming Tasks to Mitigate Hypothetical Bias in Choice Experiments," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 95(5), pages 1136-1154.
    38. Karen Blumenschein & GlennC. Blomquist & Magnus Johannesson & Nancy Horn & Patricia Freeman, 2008. "Eliciting Willingness to Pay Without Bias: Evidence from a Field Experiment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(525), pages 114-137, January.
    39. Riccarda Moser & Roberta Raffaelli & Sandra Notaro, 2014. "Testing hypothetical bias with a real choice experiment using respondents' own money," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 41(1), pages 25-46, February.
    40. Chapagain, A.K. & Hoekstra, A.Y., 2007. "The water footprint of coffee and tea consumption in the Netherlands," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 109-118, October.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Choice experiment; Field experiment; Virtual water; Sustainability label; Hypothetical bias; Coffee;

    JEL classification:

    • B4 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology
    • D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior
    • Q2 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:158:y:2019:i:c:p:475-486. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jebo .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.