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Evaluating the economic effectiveness of pathogen reduction technologies in cattle slaughter plants

Listed author(s):
  • Scott A. Malcolm

    (Food and Resource Economics, 213 Townsend, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19717. E-mail:

  • Clare A. Narrod

    (Office of Risk Assessment and Cost Benefit Analysis|USDA, Room 5248 South Building - Stop 3811, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, DC 20250-3811. E-mail:

  • Tanya Roberts

    (Economic Research Service|USDA, 1800 M Street NW - 4081N, Washington, DC 20036-5831. E-mail:

  • Michael Ollinger

    (Economic Research Service|USDA, 1800 M Street NW - 4097N, Washington, DC 20036-5831. E-mail:

Increasing risk and costs from food-borne illness has led food-processing firms to intensify pathogen reduction efforts. Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) is one system for evaluating which hazards need to be controlled and where in the production process they can be controlled. Firms may choose among many competing technologies that differ in cost and effectiveness at controlling pathogen growth. To evaluate a firm's pathogen control options, a probabilistic risk analysis model based on typical slaughterhouse practices is linked to a decision model to evaluate the cost effectiveness of seven combinations of pathogen-reducing technologies. The likely comparative advantage of different strategies for large vs. small slaughterhouses is examined. Risk is compared for two cases with the same mean risk to illustrate the importance of correct model specification. The report concludes with a discussion of the institutional barriers and incomplete markets that affect the adoption and development of more effective pathogen reduction technologies. [EconLit citations: Q180, O300, L510]. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Agribusiness 20: 109-123, 2004.

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Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Agribusiness.

Volume (Year): 20 (2004)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 109-123

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Handle: RePEc:wly:agribz:v:20:y:2004:i:1:p:109-123
DOI: 10.1002/agr.10080
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  1. Kathleen Segerson, 1999. "Mandatory versus voluntary approaches to food safety," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(1), pages 53-70.
  2. Crutchfield, Stephen R. & Buzby, Jean C. & Roberts, Tanya & Ollinger, Michael & Lin, Chung-Tung Jordan, 1997. "Economic Assessment of Food Safety Regulations: The New Approach to Meat and Poultry Inspection," Agricultural Economics Reports 34009, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
  3. Morrison, Rosanna Mentzer & Buzby, Jean C. & Lin, C.T. Jordan, 1997. "Irradiating Ground Beef to Enhance Food Safety," Food Review: The Magazine of Food Economics, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, vol. 20(1).
  4. Klein, Benjamin & Leffler, Keith B, 1981. "The Role of Market Forces in Assuring Contractual Performance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(4), pages 615-641, August.
  5. Segerson, Kathleen, 1998. "Mandatory vs. Voluntary Approaches to Food Safety," Research Reports 25188, University of Connecticut, Food Marketing Policy Center.
  6. Buzby, Jean C. & Frenzen, Paul D., 1999. "Food safety and product liability," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 24(6), pages 637-651, December.
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