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Welfare gains from quality certification of infant foods: Results from a market experiment in mali

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  • William Masters
  • Diakalia Sanogo

Abstract

In low-income countries, malnutrition is often most sever among infants of six to twenty-four months. They need higher-density foods than the family diet, but density is a credence attribute. We hypothesize that the premium now paid for heavily advertised brands reflects demand for quality assurance, which could be provided at lower cost to competing firms through third-party certification. We use a new market experiment to find that mothers' average willingness-to-pay for certification is about $1.75/kg, for four times its cost, so that total economic-surplus gains from introducing certification to Mali would be on the order of $1 million annually.

Suggested Citation

  • William Masters & Diakalia Sanogo, 2002. "Welfare gains from quality certification of infant foods: Results from a market experiment in mali," Framed Field Experiments 00191, The Field Experiments Website.
  • Handle: RePEc:feb:framed:00191
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    1. 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 255-270, March.
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    5. Smith, Lisa C. & Haddad, Lawrence James, 2000. "Explaining child malnutrition in developing countries: a cross-country analysis," Research reports 111, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    6. John M. Crespi & St)phan Marette, 2001. "How Should Food Safety Certification be Financed?," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 83(4), pages 852-861.
    7. Auriol, Emmanuelle & Schilizzi, Steven, 2000. "Quality Signaling through Certification," 2000 Conference (44th), January 23-25, 2000, Sydney, Australia 123598, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
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    1. Marette, Stéphan & Roosen, Jutta & Blanchemanche, Sandrine & Feinblatt-Mélèze, Eve, 2010. "Functional food, uncertainty and consumers' choices: A lab experiment with enriched yoghurts for lowering cholesterol," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 419-428, October.
    2. Smith, Trenton G. & Chouinard, Hayley H. & Wandschneider, Philip R., 2011. "Waiting for the invisible hand: Novel products and the role of information in the modern market for food," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 239-249, April.
    3. Alphonce, Roselyne & Alfnes, Frode, 2015. "Eliciting Consumer WTP for Food Characteristics in a Developing Context: Comparison of four methods in a field experiment," Working Paper Series 01-2015, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, School of Economics and Business.
    4. Lybbert, Travis J. & Magnan, Nicholas & Spielman, David J. & Bhargava, Anil K. & Gulati, Kajal, 2012. "Farmers' Heterogeneous Valuation of Laser Land Leveling in Eastern Uttar Pradesh: An Experimental Auction Approach to Informing Segmentation & Subsidy Strategies," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126806, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    5. Ifft, Jennifer & Roland-Holst, David W. & Zilberman, David, 2009. "Valuation of Safety-Branded and Traceable Free Range Chicken in Ha Noi: Results from a Field Experiment," 2009 Annual Meeting, July 26-28, 2009, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 49444, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    6. Marette Stéphan & Roosen Jutta & Blanchemanche Sandrine, 2011. "The Combination of Lab and Field Experiments for Benefit-Cost Analysis," Journal of Benefit-Cost Analysis, De Gruyter, vol. 2(3), pages 1-36, August.
    7. Johnson, Nancy L. & Atherstone, Christine & Grace, Delia, 2015. "The potential of farm-level technologies and practices to contribute to reducing consumer exposure to aflatoxins: A theory of change analysis:," IFPRI discussion papers 1452, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    8. Lybbert, Travis J. & Magnan, Nicholas & Spielman, David J. & Bhargava, Anil K. & Gulati, Kajal, 2013. "Targeting technology to reduce poverty and conserve resources: Experimental delivery of laser land leveling to farmers in Uttar Pradesh, India:," IFPRI discussion papers 1274, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    9. Jutta Roosen & Stephan Marette & Sandrine Blanchemanche, 2010. "Value Elicitation using BDM and a Discrete Choice Mechanism," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 30(2), pages 1554-1563.
    10. Stéphan Marette & Jayson L. Lusk & Jutta Roosen, 2010. "Welfare Impact of Information with Experiments: The Crucial Role of the Price Elasticity of Demand," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 30(2), pages 1585-1593.
    11. Levan Elbakidze & Rodolfo M. Nayga Jr. & Hao Li & Chris McIntosh, 2014. "Value elicitation for multiple quantities of a quasi-public good using open ended choice experiments and uniform price auctions," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 45(2), pages 253-265, March.
    12. Anne-Célia Disdier & Stéphan Marette, 2012. "Taxes, minimum-quality standards and/or product labeling to improve environmental quality and welfare: Experiments can provide answers," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 41(3), pages 337-357, June.
    13. Probst, Lorenz & Houedjofonon, Elysée & Ayerakwa, Hayford Mensah & Haas, Rainer, 2012. "Will they buy it? The potential for marketing organic vegetables in the food vending sector to strengthen vegetable safety: A choice experiment study in three West African cities," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 296-308.
    14. repec:bla:jageco:v:68:y:2017:i:1:p:123-142 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Marette, Stephan & Roosen, Jutta & Blanchemanche, Sandrine & Verger, Philippe, 2008. "The Choice of Fish Species: An Experiment Measuring the Impact of Risk and Benefit Information," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 33(01), April.
    16. Stéphan Marette & Jutta Roosen & Sandrine Blanchemanche, 2008. "Taxes and subsidies to change eating habits when information is not enough: an application to fish consumption," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 34(2), pages 119-143, October.
    17. Marette, Stéphan & Roosen, Jutta & Blanchemanche, Sandrine, 2008. "Health information and substitution between fish: Lessons from laboratory and field experiments," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 197-208, June.
    18. Trenton Smith & Hayley Chouinard & Philip Wandschneider, 2009. "Waiting for the Invisible Hand: Market Power and Endogenous Information in the Modern Market for Food," Working Papers 2009-07, School of Economic Sciences, Washington State University.
    19. Marette, Stéphan & Messéan, Antoine & Millet, Guy, 2012. "Consumers’ willingness to pay for eco-friendly apples under different labels: Evidences from a lab experiment," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 151-161.
    20. Hugo Groote & Clare Narrod & Simon C. Kimenju & Charles Bett & Rosemarie P. B. Scott & Marites M. Tiongco & Zachary M. Gitonga, 2016. "Measuring rural consumers’ willingness to pay for quality labels using experimental auctions: the case of aflatoxin-free maize in Kenya," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 47(1), pages 33-45, January.
    21. Banerji, Abhijit & Birol, Ekin & Karandikar, Bhushana & Rampal, Jeevant, 2016. "Information, branding, certification, and consumer willingness to pay for high-iron pearl millet: Evidence from experimental auctions in Maharashtra, India," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 133-141.

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