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Abstract

This research examines how fluctuations in quality affect consumer expenditures for fresh fruit at the retail level. This paper examines how consumers' purchasing behaviors react to changes in fresh fruit quality by quantifying quality characteristics based on weekly observations. A four-point scale was created and used to quantify four different quality characteristics: bruising, markings, brilliance, and maturity. A non-linear Almost Ideal Demand System was used to model the share equations for Gala apples, Fuji apples, Red Delicious apples, other sweet apples, tart apples, pears, bananas, and oranges. Seventy-nine weeks of data on weekly store sales were collected from two grocery stores in the Portland, Oregon metropolitan area. Results from the quality measures are provided and discussed. Suggestions are made for modifications to the quality measures to improve the modeling results of future fruit-demand studies.

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