Consumer valuation studies and structural modelling of the pig industry
In this thesis, animal welfare in the pig industry is investigated from an economic perspective. More specifically, the impact of the "Swedish model" on consumers and producer is examined. The "Swedish model" refers to the animal welfare promoting legislations and voluntary certification schemes that was adopted in Swedish pig production from the 1980's and onwards. The willingness to pay for animal welfare attributes among consumers is investigated in two studies. The attributes analyzed are all related to the "Swedish model" or are practiced experimentally. The consumer's willingness to pay for animal welfare attributes is mostly positive, with a particularly high value for mobile abattoirs and air-partition (fewer pigs per stable section). There is a negative willingness to pay for elimination of castration. Moreover, the heterogeneity of consumer preferences for animal welfare is investigated. Preferences are found to be heterogeneous and the results suggest that consumers' preferences could be divided into different segments. The division into segments is likely to depend on consumers' preferences for animal welfare and food safety issues. Moreover, the economic implications of the "Swedish model" are investigated in a structural equation model. It is found that the Animal Welfare Act of 1988, the ban of using growth promoters and the space requirements for sows in nursery have affected supply of pigs negatively. If these animal welfare regulations had not been adopted the total production would have increased moderately and the retail price of pork would be lower. Hence, the animal welfare regulations of the "Swedish model" have implied increased costs to the pork sector with higher prices and lower production levels.
|Date of creation:||2008|
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