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


  • 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.

Suggested Citation

  • Scott A. Malcolm & Clare A. Narrod & Tanya Roberts & Michael Ollinger, 2004. "Evaluating the economic effectiveness of pathogen reduction technologies in cattle slaughter plants," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(1), pages 109-123.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:agribz:v:20:y:2004:i:1:p:109-123
    DOI: 10.1002/agr.10080

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    References listed on IDEAS

    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/ National Food Review, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, vol. 20(1), pages 1-5.
    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. Kathleen Segerson, 1998. "Mandatory vs. Voluntary Approaches to Food Safety," Food Marketing Policy Center Research Reports 036, University of Connecticut, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Charles J. Zwick Center for Food and Resource Policy.
    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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    Cited by:

    1. Resende-Filho, Moises & Buhr, Brian, 2007. "Economics of traceability for mitigation of food recall costs," MPRA Paper 3650, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Mangen, Marie-Josee J. & Havelaar, Arie H. & Nauta, Maarten J. & de Koeijer, Aline A. & de Wit, G. Ardine, 2005. "Controlling Campylabacter in the Chicken Meat Chain: A Cost-Utility Analysis," 2005 International Congress, August 23-27, 2005, Copenhagen, Denmark 24763, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    3. Marie-Josée J. Mangen & G. Ardine de Wit & Arie H. Havelaar, 2007. "Economic analysis of Campylobacter control in the dutch broiler meat chain," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 23(2), pages 173-192.
    4. Loren W. Tauer & Cameron Nightingale & Renata Ivanek & Yrjö T. Gröhn & Martin Wiedmann, 2007. "Optimal levels of inputs to control Listeria monocytogenes contamination at a smoked fish plant," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 23(2), pages 229-244.
    5. Jensen, Jørgen Dejgård & Lawson, Lartey Godwin & Lund, Mogens, 2015. "Systemic cost-effectiveness analysis of food hazard reduction – Campylobacter in Danish broiler supply," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 241(1), pages 273-282.
    6. Michael Ollinger & Danna L. Moore, 2008. "The Economic Forces Driving Food Safety Quality in Meat and Poultry," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 30(2), pages 289-310.

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