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Traceability And Country Of Origin Labelling

  • Hobbs, Jill E.

Country of origin labelling (COOL) on food products is controversial. There is disagreement over whether consumers value information on country of origin intrinsically or as a quality or a safety signal. The debate becomes more heated when country of origin labelling is mandated by regulation, with fears that the regulation is driven by producer rather than consumer interests. Country of origin labelling has implications for traceability systems in agrifood supply chains. The ability to provide consumers with information on the country of origin requires a basic level of traceability, although does not necessarily imply full traceability throughout the supply chain to the farm. This paper examines the role of traceability and identity preservation systems in marketing agrifood products, focusing on the underlying economic functions of traceability systems. Voluntary versus mandatory labelling of country of origin and/or traceability becomes a question of determining if consumers value this information and whether a market failure exists in providing this information. The table implications of mandatory country of origin labelling are explored within this context.

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File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/16813
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Paper provided by Farm Foundation, Agricultural and Food Policy Systems Information Workshops in its series Farm Policy Development and Policy Tensions under NAFTA; Proceedings of the 9th Agricultural and Food Policy Systems Information Workshop - 2003 with number 16813.

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Date of creation: 2003
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Handle: RePEc:ags:ffaf03:16813
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  1. Grossman, Sanford J, 1981. "The Informational Role of Warranties and Private Disclosure about Product Quality," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 461-83, December.
  2. Hayes, Dermot J. & Shogren, Jason F. & Shin, Seung Youll & Kliebenstein, James, 1995. "Valuing Food Safety in Experimental Auction Markets," Staff General Research Papers 835, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  3. David Dickinson & DeeVon Bailey, 2001. "Meat traceability: are U.S. consumers willing to pay for it?," Working Papers 2001-14, Utah State University, Department of Economics.
  4. John D. Lawrence, 2002. "Quality Assurance "Down Under": Market Access and Product Differentiation," Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications 02-mbp1, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.
  5. Shogren, Jason F. & Seung Y. Shin & Dermot J. Hayes & James B. Kliebenstein, 1994. "Resolving Differences in Willingness to Pay and Willingness to Accept," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(1), pages 255-70, March.
  6. John D. Lawrence, 2002. "Quality Assurance "Down Under": Market Access and Product Differentiation," Midwest Agribusiness Trade Research and Information Center (MATRIC) Publications 02-mbp1, Midwest Agribusiness Trade Research and Information Center (MATRIC) at Iowa State University.
  7. Hobbs, Jill E., 2003. "Traceability in Meat Supply Chains," CAFRI: Current Agriculture, Food and Resource Issues, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society, issue 04.
  8. Schupp, Alvin R. & Gillespie, Jeffrey M., 2001. "Consumer Attitudes Toward Potential Country-Of-Origin Labeling Of Fresh Or Frozen Beef," Journal of Food Distribution Research, Food Distribution Research Society, vol. 32(03), November.
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