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Consumer Willingness-to-Pay for Genetically Modified Potatoes in Ireland: An Experimental Auction Approach

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Michael Wallace


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It is recognized that many consumers are skeptical about genetically modified (GM) foods. Yet less is known about the extent to which consumers may purchase GM food products given suitable price positioning and marketing information on nonprice attributes of the products. In this study, we examine consumer acceptance of GM late blight resistant potatoes in Ireland. Our analysis uses an experimental auction methodology that facilitates positive and negative bids to provide a more complete revelation of preferences. Results show that a majority of participants preferred conventional potatoes to GM potatoes. Favorable information about GM increased subjects’ valuations of GM potatoes. After being informed about potential economic and health benefits, up to two-thirds of our subjects indicated that they would choose GM potatoes at a 20% price discount, while 14% of subjects would still reject GM potatoes at any price. Higher levels of education, greater familiarity with GM, and the presence of children in the household were associated with lower valuation of the GM product. [EconLit citations: C91; D12].

Publication metadata

Author(s): Thorne F, Fox JA, Mullins E, Wallace M

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Agribusiness

Year: 2017

Volume: 33

Issue: 1

Pages: 43-55

Print publication date: 17/01/2017

Online publication date: 11/08/2016

Acceptance date: 28/06/2016

Date deposited: 03/02/2017

ISSN (print): 2211-5811

ISSN (electronic): 1570-2367

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


DOI: 10.1002/agr.21477


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