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Consumer Boycotts: The Impact of the Iraq War on French Wine Sales in the U.S

  • Larry Chavis
  • Phillip Leslie

The French Opposition to the war in Iraq in early 2003, prompted calls for a boycott of French wine in the US. We measure the magnitude of consumers%u2019 participation in the boycott, and look at basic evidence of who participates. Conservative estimates indicate that the boycott resulted in 26% lower weekly sales at its peak, and 13% lower sales over the six month period that we estimate the boycott lasted for. These findings suggest that business should be concerned that their actions may provoke a boycott which hurts their profits. We also find that neither political preferences or media attention are important determinants of boycott participation.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 11981.

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Date of creation: Jan 2006
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Chavis, L. and P. Leslie. “Consumer Boycotts: The Impact of the Iraq War on French Wine Sales in the U.S.” Quantitative Marketing & Economics 7, 1 (2009): 37-67.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:11981
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  1. Siew Hong Teoh & Christopher Paul Wazzan & Ivo Welch, 1996. "The Effect Of Socially Activist Investment Policies On The Financial Markets: Evidence From The South African Boycott," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm70, Yale School of Management.
  2. Andrew John & Jill Klein, 2003. "The Boycott Puzzle: Consumer Motivations for Purchase Sacrifice," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 49(9), pages 1196-1209, September.
  3. Stefano DellaVigna & Ethan Kaplan, 2007. "The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1187-1234, 08.
  4. David P. Baron, 2003. "Private Politics," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(1), pages 31-66, 03.
  5. Koku, Paul Sergius & Akhigbe, Aigbe & Springer, Thomas M., 1997. "The Financial Impact of Boycotts and Threats of Boycott," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 15-20, September.
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