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Consumer Welfare and the Loss Induced by Withheld Information: The Case of BSE in Italy


  • Mazzocchi, Mario
  • Stefani, Gianluca


The paper develops a measure of consumer welfare losses associated with withheld information about BSE linkage with vCJD. food safety. The Cost of Ignorance (COI) is measured by comparing the utility of the informed choice with the utility of the uninformed one, under condition of improved information. Unlike previous work, based on a single equation demand model, the measure is obtained retrieving a cost function from a dynamic Almost Ideal Demand System. The results indicate that Italian consumers bore a significant loss because of the delayed release of information.

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  • Mazzocchi, Mario & Stefani, Gianluca, 2002. "Consumer Welfare and the Loss Induced by Withheld Information: The Case of BSE in Italy," 2002 International Congress, August 28-31, 2002, Zaragoza, Spain 24927, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:eaae02:24927

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    6. Mario F. Teisl & Nancy E. Bockstael & Alan Levy, 2001. "Measuring the Welfare Effects of Nutrition Information," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 83(1), pages 133-149.
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    Cited by:

    1. Colson, Gregory & Huffman, Wallace E. & Rousu, Matthew C., 2011. "Improving the Nutrient Content of Food through Genetic Modification: Evidence from Experimental Auctions on Consumer Acceptance," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 36(2), August.
    2. Stefani, Gianluca & Valli, Carlotta, 2004. "Exploring the Impacts of Risk Communication Policies on Welfare: Theoretical Aspects," 84th Seminar, February 8-11, 2004, Zeist, The Netherlands 24989, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    3. Radwan, Amr & Gil, Jose Maria & Ben Kaabia, Monia & Serra, Teresa, 2008. "Modeling The Impact Of Food Safety Information On Meat Demand In Spain," 107th Seminar, January 30-February 1, 2008, Sevilla, Spain 6672, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    4. Iimi, Atsushi, 2007. "Infrastructure and trade preferences for the livestock sector : empirical evidence from the beef industry in Africa," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4201, The World Bank.

    More about this item


    Food safety; welfare analysis; information; Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety; BSE; D80; D60; D12;

    JEL classification:

    • D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General
    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis


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