Beef Quality Preferences in Western Australia

A declining per capita consumption of beef and veal in Western Australia has encouraged an interest in the better matching of supply to consumer needs. Consumers' preferences for quality attributes of goods is reflected in the price consumers pay for the goods. These preferences may be transmitted backwards through each stage of the marketing channel and are reflected in the prices producers receive for goods of different quality. Producers are therefore encouraged to tailor these products to meet consumer preferences. Hedonic price analysis, a technique for analysing consumer preferences for quality attributes, is applied to different stages of the marketing channel, ie producer-wholesaler and wholesaler-retailer. A close correspondence in quality-related price differentials at the various levels of the marketing channel would indicate the possibility for efficient communication of price signals from consumers to producers. A sample of 516 cattle and carcasses has been chosen over a period of five weeks during winter and spring. Cattle are individually identified and their progress from live auction to carcass sale is studied with information collected as to selected quality characteristics and the prices. In this paper, the price of cattle has been hypothesised to be a function of liveweight, breed, nutrition, buying source, age, sex, fat depth, season, and location of abattoir; while the carcass price is explained by carcass weight, nutrition, age, sex, fat depth, fat and meat colour, fat and meat texture, bruising, season, and location of abattoir. The preliminary analysis indicated that weight, buying source, age, sex, fat depth, colour, texture, bruising and season are important characteristics for determinants of price.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-23

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