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Quality Certification by Geographical Indications, Trademarks and Firm Reputation

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  • Menapace, Luisa
  • Moschini, GianCarlo

Abstract

We study firm reputation as a mechanism to assure product quality in perfectly competitive markets in a context in which both certification and trademarks are available. Shapiro’s (1983) model of reputation is extended to reflect both collective and firm-specific reputations, and this framework is used to study certification and trademarks for food products with a regional identity, known as geographical indications (GIs). Our model yields two primary results. First, in markets with asymmetric information and moral hazard problems, credible certification schemes reduce the cost of establishing reputation and lead to welfare gains compared to a situation in which only private trademarks are available. Hence, certification improves the ability of reputation to operate as a mechanism for assuring quality. Second, the actual design of the certification scheme plays an important role in mitigating informational problems. From a policy perspective, our results have implications for the current debate and negotiations on GIs at the World Trade Organization and the ongoing product quality policy reform within the European Union. With regard to the instrument of choice to provide intellectual property protection for GIs, our model favors a sui generis scheme based on appellations over certification marks. Finally, our model supports the validity of the traditional specialities guaranteed scheme of the European Union as an instrument for the provision of high-quality products that are not linked to a geographic area.

Suggested Citation

  • Menapace, Luisa & Moschini, GianCarlo, 2010. "Quality Certification by Geographical Indications, Trademarks and Firm Reputation," 2010 Annual Meeting, July 25-27, 2010, Denver, Colorado 61778, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea10:61778
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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/61778
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Daniel Pick, 2008. "Geographical Indications and the Competitive Provision of Quality in Agricultural Markets," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 90(3), pages 794-812.
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    Cited by:

    1. Teuber, Ramona & Herrmann, Roland, 2012. "Towards a differentiated modeling of origin effects in hedonic analysis: An application to auction prices of specialty coffee," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 732-740.
    2. Tauber, Ramona & Anders, Sven M. & Langinier, Corinne, 2011. "The Economics of Geographical Indications: Welfare Implications," Working Papers 103262, Structure and Performance of Agriculture and Agri-products Industry (SPAA).
    3. Deselnicu, Oana C. & Costanigro, Marco & Souza-Monteiro, Diogo M. & McFadden, Dawn Thilmany, 2013. "A Meta-Analysis of Geographical Indication Food Valuation Studies: What Drives the Premium for Origin-Based Labels?," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 38(2), August.
    4. Marion Desquilbet & Sylvette Monier-Dilhan, 2015. "Are geographical indications a worthy quality label? A framework with endogenous quality choice," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 42(1), pages 129-150.
    5. Teuber, Ramona, 2011. "Protecting Geographical Indications: Lessons learned from the Economic Literature," 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland 116081, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    6. Nacka, Marina & Georgiev, Nenad & Tuna, Emelj & Hazdievski, Vasko, 2013. "Support in Decision-Making for Protection of Geographical Indications of Macedonian Agro-Food Products," 2013 Conference: Tools for decision support in agriculture and rural development, April 18-19, 2013, Krško, Slovenia 183906, Slovenian Association of Agricultural Economists (DAES).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Asymmetric Information; Certification; Geographical Indications; Quality; Reputation; Environmental Economics and Policy; D23; D82; L14; L15; Q1;

    JEL classification:

    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • L14 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Transactional Relationships; Contracts and Reputation
    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
    • Q1 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture

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