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Consumer Attitudes toward GM Food and Pesticide Residues in India

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  • Vijesh V. Krishna
  • Matin Qaim

Abstract

Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) vegetables will likely be commercialized in India soon. The technology could reduce pesticide residues in foods. Yet it is unclear whether consumers will appreciate this health advantage, or whether potential GM crop risks will dominate their attitudes. Using contingent valuation methods and a sample of urban households, we find that almost 60% of consumers would purchase Bt vegetables at current conventional vegetable prices, indicating a high acceptance level. The rest would purchase at a certain price discount. Strikingly, the required discount increases for people particularly concerned about pesticide residues, demonstrating that risk-averse consumers do not easily offset technology benefits against perceived risks.

Suggested Citation

  • Vijesh V. Krishna & Matin Qaim, 2008. "Consumer Attitudes toward GM Food and Pesticide Residues in India," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 30(2), pages 233-251.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:revage:v:30:y:2008:i:2:p:233-251.
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/j.1467-9353.2008.00402.x
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    1. Raymond J. G. M. Florax & Chiara M. Travisi & Peter Nijkamp, 2005. "A meta-analysis of the willingness to pay for reductions in pesticide risk exposure," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 32(4), pages 441-467, December.
    2. Fernandez-Cornejo, Jorge & Caswell, Margriet, 2006. "The First Decade of Genetically Engineered Crops in the USA," Economic Information Bulletin 33897, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    3. Richard Bennett & Uma Kambhampati & Stephen Morse & Yousouf Ismael, 2006. "Farm-Level Economic Performance of Genetically Modified Cotton in Maharashtra, India," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 28(1), pages 59-71.
    4. Krishna, Vijesh V. & Qaim, Matin, 2007. "Estimating the adoption of Bt eggplant in India: Who Benefits from public-private partnership?," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(5-6), pages 523-543.
    5. Boccaletti, Stefano & Nardella, Michele, 2000. "Consumer Willingness To Pay For Pesticide-Free Fresh Fruit And Vegetables In Italy," International Food and Agribusiness Management Review, International Food and Agribusiness Management Association, vol. 3(3), pages 1-14.
    6. Curtis, Kynda R. & Wahl, Thomas I. & McCluskey, Jill J., 2003. "Consumer Acceptance of Genetically Modified Food Products in the Developing World," 2003 Conference (47th), February 12-14, 2003, Fremantle, Australia 57858, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
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