The congruence of beef consumers' purchases with their stated preferences regarding internal fat content are examined. The role of U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) grades and housebrand labeling of beef in providing information to consumers is studied in the theoretical framework of search theory. The empirical results indicate that the current system of USDA grades and housebrand labels is not disseminating information regarding internal fat content effectively to consumers. Suggestions are made for providing consumers with better information and education necessary to increase congruence of expressed preferences regarding internal fat content and actual beef purchases.


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