How safe is my food?: Assessing the effect of information and credible certification on consumer demand for food safety in developing countries
The literature regarding consumer demand for safer food in developing countries is scant, and the general assumption is that these consumers' willingness to pay (WTP, as an indicator of their demand) is constrained by their low ability to pay (ATP). There are, however, a number of developing countries with growing middle-income populations whose ATP has been steadily increasing, although low food safety standards in these countries still prevail. In this paper, we argue that ATP, while necessary, is not the sole condition for WTP and that credible information about and certification of food safety are required to ensure that ATP translates into WTP. To test this hypothesis, we conducted a randomized market experiment in two branches of a supermarket chain in Mumbai, India, a city that hosts one of the world's fastest growing middle-income populations. In this experiment, we sold grapes with credible food safety certification labels and the exact same grapes (a placebo) without such labels. We provided all consumers with extensive food safety information comprising banners and posters announcing the sale of food-safety-certified grapes in the supermarket. We also randomly selected one-half of the consumers and provided them with intensive information (a short documentation flier) describing what credible certification of food safety entails. By continuously varying the prices (with the labeled grapes priced higher than unlabeled ones) during the month in which the experiment was implemented, we found that those consumers who received intensive information (the treatment group) are more likely to purchase grapes labeled as certified. This result is robust to the inclusion of an extensive set of controls (income, gender, and education) gathered through a structured survey instrument implemented following the purchase of the grapes. To further investigate the marginal impact of credible information on consumer demand for food safety, we studied consumers' answers to various knowledge, attitude, perception, and practice (KAPP) questions also collected through the survey instrument. Using KAPP responses, we created a consumer-specific food safety consciousness index (FSCI) and stratified consumers according to those below and those above the sample mean FSCI. We find that the marginal impact of credible information and certification on the purchase of labeled grapes is significantly greater for consumers with higher FSCI. We therefore conclude that credible information and certification are important determinants of consumer demand for food safety.
|Date of creation:||2010|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Web page: http://www.ifpri.org/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Riccardo Scarpa & George Philippidis & Fiorenza Spalatro, 2005. "Product-country images and preference heterogeneity for Mediterranean food products: A discrete choice framework," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(3), pages 329-349.
- Peter A. Diamond & Jerry A. Hausman, 1994. "Contingent Valuation: Is Some Number Better than No Number?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(4), pages 45-64, Fall.
- Elizabeth Hoffman & Dale J. Menkhaus & Dipankar Chakravarti & Ray A. Field & Glen D. Whipple, 1993. "Using Laboratory Experimental Auctions in Marketing Research: A Case Study of New Packaging for Fresh Beef," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 12(3), pages 318-338.
- Scarpa Riccardo & Del Giudice Teresa, 2004. "Market Segmentation via Mixed Logit: Extra-Virgin Olive Oil in Urban Italy," Journal of Agricultural & Food Industrial Organization, De Gruyter, vol. 2(1), pages 1-20, August.
- John A. Fox & Jason F. Shogren & Dermot J. Hayes & James B. Kliebenstein, 1998.
"CVM-X: Calibrating Contingent Values with Experimental Auction Markets,"
American Journal of Agricultural Economics,
Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 80(3), pages 455-465.
- Fox, John A. & Shogren, J. & Hayes, Dermot J. & Kliebenstein, James, 2003. "Cvm-X: Calibrating Contingent Values with Experimental Auction Markets," Staff General Research Papers 11935, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
- Fox, John A. & Shogren, Jason F. & Hayes, Dermot J. & Kliebenstein, James, 1998. "Cvm-X: Calibrating Contingent Values with Experimental Auction Markets," Staff General Research Papers 1311, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
- Jeffrey R. Blend & Eileen O. van Ravenswaay, 1999. "Measuring Consumer Demand for Ecolabeled Apples," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1072-1077.
- Hamilton, Stephen F. & Sunding, David L. & Zilberman, David, 2003. "Public goods and the value of product quality regulations: the case of food safety," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(3-4), pages 799-817, March.
- Roosen, Jutta & Fox, John A. & Hennessy, David A. & Schreiber, Alan, 1998. "Consumers' Valuation Of Insecticide Use Restrictions: An Application To Apples," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 23(02), December.
- Vijesh V. Krishna & Matin Qaim, 2008. "Consumer Attitudes toward GM Food and Pesticide Residues in India," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 30(2), pages 233-251.
- 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.
- Isabell Goldberg & Jutta Roosen, 2007. "Scope insensitivity in health risk reduction studies: A comparison of choice experiments and the contingent valuation method for valuing safer food," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 34(2), pages 123-144, April.
- 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.
- Lusk, Jayson L. & Roosen, Jutta & Fox, John A., 2001.
"Demand For Beef From Cattle Administered Growth Hormones Or Fed Genetically Modified Corn: A Comparison Of Consumers In France, Germany, The United Kingdom, And The United States,"
2001 Annual meeting, August 5-8, Chicago, IL
20684, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
- Jayson L. Lusk & Jutta Roosen & John A. Fox, 2003. "Demand for Beef from Cattle Administered Growth Hormones or Fed Genetically Modified Corn: A Comparison of Consumers in France, Germany, the United Kingdom, and the United States," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 85(1), pages 16-29.
- Maria L. Loureiro & Azucena Gracia & Rodolfo M. Nayga, 2006. "Do consumers value nutritional labels?," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 33(2), pages 249-268, June.
- B. G. Dahlby, 1981. "Measuring the Effect on a Consumer of Stabilizing the Price of a Commodity," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 14(3), pages 440-49, August.
- Mariah D. Ehmke & Jayson L. Lusk & Wallace Tyner, 2008. "Measuring the relative importance of preferences for country of origin in China, France, Niger, and the United States," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 38(3), pages 277-285, 05.
- Jeff Bennett & Ekin Birol (ed.), 2010. "Choice Experiments in Developing Countries," Books, Edward Elgar, number 13208, 6.
- Birol, Ekin & Roy, Devesh & Deffner, Katharina & Karandikar, Bhushana, 2009. "Developing country consumers’ demand for food safety and quality: Is Mumbai ready for certified and organic fruits?," 2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China 51689, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
- Lybbert, Travis J. & Barrett, Christopher B. & McPeak, John G. & Luseno, Winnie K., 2007. "Bayesian Herders: Updating of Rainfall Beliefs in Response to External Forecasts," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 480-497, March.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fpr:ifprid:1029. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.