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"Are genetically modified foods bad for my health?". Individuals' valutation and the choice among different information sources

  • Sergio Beraldo


  • Stefania Ottone


  • Gilberto Turati


We investigate the role of information on consumers’ valuation for food products containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs), using data from a specifically designed survey. We provide three main results. First, we show that introducing mandatory labels to identify whether or not a food product contains GMOs, significantly reduces consumers’ valuation. Second, adding to the label additional information on GMOs significantly affects valuation. Third, no matter the sign of the information previously received, consumers are more willing to trust General Practitioners (GPs), the information source they prefer most. Overall, these results indicate that the crucial issue is not the presence of the label per se, but the availability of the necessary information to make good use of the label content to assess potential health risks deriving from GM foods. In particular, our findings suggest that this can be achieved by properly informing (and convincing) GPs and other health professionals that risks for human health are minimal.

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Paper provided by ICER - International Centre for Economic Research in its series ICER Working Papers with number 05-2011.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:icr:wpicer:05-2011
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  1. Maria De Paola & Vincenzo Scoppa, 2010. "Consumers’ Reactions To Negative Information On Product Quality: Evidence From Scanner Data," Working Papers 201012, Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza (Ex Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica).
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