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Even though the European Union has imposed a mandatory labeling system for conventional meats, there is no mandatory labelling scheme for the so called ‘minor meats’ – such as hunted wild game meat (HWGM). Thus, some European countries have implemented voluntary labelling programs certificating the origin of wild game meat. This study uses a discrete choice experiment to: (1) assess consumer preferences for processed meat products (including wild game meat bearing a HWGM label); and (2) investigate whether consumers’ attitudes towards animal welfare affects their food choice behavior for alternative meat products. Data was collected through an online survey conducted in Italy and consumer preferences for HWGM was estimated through a latent class logit model. Overall, results suggest that, even though HWGM label does not exist yet on the Italian market, it is appealing to Italian consumers and it will likely be accepted by the majority of them. However, consumers who are particularly concerned about animal welfare issues and animal rights showed the lowest level of the interest in the hunted game meat product and thus the presence of the HWGM label does not provide any benefit to them. Our findings have important implications for the development of successful marketing strategies and policy intervention in the HWGM sector at a national and European level.


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