IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Optimal Pricing and Return Policies for Perishable Commodities


  • Barry Alan Pasternack

    (California State University)


This paper considers the pricing decision faced by a producer of a commodity with a short shelf or demand life. A hierarchical model is developed, and the results of the single period inventory model are used to examine possible pricing and return policies. The paper shows that several such policies currently in effect are suboptimal. These include those where the manufacturer offers retailers full credit for all unsold goods or where no returns of unsold goods are permitted. The paper also demonstrates that a policy whereby a manufacturer offers retailers full credit for a partial return of goods may achieve channel coordination, but that the optimal return allowance will be a function of retailer demand. Therefore, such a policy cannot be optimal in a multi-retailer environment. It is proven, however, that a pricing and return policy in which a manufacturer offers retailers a partial credit for all unsold goods can achieve channel coordination in a multi-retailer environment.

Suggested Citation

  • Barry Alan Pasternack, 1985. "Optimal Pricing and Return Policies for Perishable Commodities," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 4(2), pages 166-176.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormksc:v:4:y:1985:i:2:p:166-176

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    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:inm:ormksc:v:4:y:1985:i:2:p:166-176. 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: (Mirko Janc) The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Mirko Janc to update the entry or send us the correct email address. General contact details of provider: .

    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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.