Consumers’ perceptions and tradeoffs between the safety and quality of artisan cheese

This paper combines hedonic analysis of retail prices of artisan cheese with analysis of experimental auction data to answer two key research questions: how do artisan cheese consumers perceive tradeoffs between safety and quality? To what extent do they perceive pasteurization and aging to be food safety attributes? Experimental auctions using a Becker-DeGroot-Marschak (BDM) auction mechanism were conducted on computer tablets with consumers at farmers markets in Michigan, New York, and Vermont. Along with the auctions, participants were asked to evaluate the sensory characteristics of multiple varieties of cheese and respond to pre-auction questions about demographics and post-auction questions about risk preferences and food safety attitudes. Retail data was also used to examine the marginal value of pasteurization and age as it is currently distinguished in the marketplace. We find that pasteurization is a food safety attribute to only a small portion of consumers and age is not a safety attribute. There does appear to be a tradeoff between safety and quality and this tradeoff is driven largely by ideological differences among consumers. There is also evidence that artisan cheese consumers appear to engage in selective exposure to information about pasteurization.

Issue Date:
Publication Type:
Conference Paper/ Presentation
Record Identifier:
PURL Identifier:
Total Pages:

 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-10-10

Download fulltext

Rate this document:

Rate this document:
(Not yet reviewed)