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Modeling the Impact of New Information on Consumer Preferences for Specialty Meat Products

  • Wang, Xi
  • Curtis, Kynda R.
  • Moeltner, Klaus

As the demand for organic and natural food grows in the U.S., studies show that consumers would and do pay more for these foods than their traditional counterparts. However, the question remains as to whether consumers really understand the differences between organic and natural products versus common products. The USDA provides an official definition of organic, but there is no official definition or certification for natural products. The general lack of knowledge among consumers concerning organic and natural products can be misleading and hence, there is a need for a better understanding of how consumer pre-existing knowledge and new information regarding organic and natural products influences consumer purchasing behavior. In this study, we research the effect of providing consumers with information regarding organic and natural production processes in four separate stages on their willingness to pay (WTP) for various natural/organic meat products. Through the use of survey data collected in-person during the fall of 2007 Nevada, in which 597 surveys were completed, we examine the impact of consumer perceived knowledge of organic and natural grass-fed production processes on their WTP, whether or not new information/knowledge will modify their WTP, and the degree of modification across meat types and cuts. Meats examined vary from high-end to low-end cuts and across various meat types, such as pork and beef. The modeling will include a multinomial probit model to measure WTP and also consider the modeling issues that arise when updated preferences are included. The results of this study will be important for researchers looking to model updated consumer preferences. The purpose of our research is twofold. First, we wish to observe whether or not advertising and other promotional methods truly influence consumer demand and willingness to pay for these specialty meat products. These results will likely be important to the role of marketing and the way in which information is provided to consumers on organic and natural production methods and the potential positive effects of those methods. Additionally, the paper will show how consumers purchasing experiences and pre-existing knowledge might influence their reaction to the same information.

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File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/100540
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Paper provided by Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society in its series 2011 Conference (55th), February 8-11, 2011, Melbourne, Australia with number 100540.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:ags:aare11:100540
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  1. W. Bruce Traill, 2004. "Effect of information about benefits of biotechnology on consumer acceptance of genetically modified food: evidence from experimental auctions in the United States, England, and France," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 31(2), pages 179-204, June.
  2. Grannis, Jennifer L. & Hooker, Neal H. & Thilmany, Dawn D., 2000. "Consumer Preference For Specific Attributes In Natural Beef Products," 2000 Annual Meeting, June 29-July 1, 2000, Vancouver, British Columbia 36406, Western Agricultural Economics Association.
  3. Anna Alberini & Paolo Rosato & Alberto Longo & Valentina Zanatta, 2004. "Information and Willingness to Pay in a Contingent Valuation Study: The Value of S. Erasmo in the Lagoon of Venice," Working Papers 2004.19, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  4. Ian J. Bateman & Brett H. Day & Diane P. Dupont & Stavros Georgiou, 2009. "Procedural Invariance Testing of the One-and-One-Half-Bound Dichotomous Choice Elicitation Method," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 91(4), pages 806-820, November.
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  6. Wendy J. Umberger & Dawn D. Thilmany McFadden & Amanda R. Smith, 2009. "Does altruism play a role in determining U.S. consumer preferences and willingness to pay for natural and regionally produced beef?," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(2), pages 268-285.
  7. Berrens, Robert P. & Bohara, Alok K. & Jenkins-Smith, Hank C. & Silva, Carol L. & Weimer, David L., 2004. "Information and effort in contingent valuation surveys: application to global climate change using national internet samples," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 331-363, March.
  8. Lusk, Jayson L., 2002. "Effects Of Cheap Talk On Consumer Willingness-To-Pay For Golden Rice," 2002 Annual meeting, July 28-31, Long Beach, CA 19597, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  9. Trudy Ann Cameron & Jeffrey Englin, 1996. "Respondent Experience and Contingent Valuation of Environmental Goods," UCLA Economics Working Papers 752, UCLA Department of Economics.
  10. Jorgensen, Bradley S. & Syme, Geoffrey J. & Nancarrow, Blair E., 2006. "The role of uncertainty in the relationship between fairness evaluations and willingness to pay," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 104-124, January.
  11. Ajzen, Icek & Brown, Thomas C. & Rosenthal, Lori H., 1996. "Information Bias in Contingent Valuation: Effects of Personal Relevance, Quality of Information, and Motivational Orientation," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 43-57, January.
  12. Robert Berrens, 2000. "Reluctant respondents and contingent valuation surveys," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 7(4), pages 263-266.
  13. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521855167 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Bateman, Ian J. & Mawby, James, 2004. "First impressions count: interviewer appearance and information effects in stated preference studies," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 47-55, May.
  15. Blomquist, Glenn C. & Whitehead, John C., 1998. "Resource quality information and validity of willingness to pay in contingent valuation," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 179-196, June.
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