Animal diseases such as bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) are a threat to the animal product marketing sector and the broader economy. Policy makers and industry stakeholders seek a means of assessing a disease threat's economic impacts when evaluating prevention and mitigation measures. But, differences in the focus of the impact analysis (production level, market prices, welfare), level of analysis (geographically, marketing phase) and proposed policy alternatives all influence the analytical approach. This paper surveys previous research, focusing on methodological approaches and results. Drawing from past research and future economic data needs, a typology is developed to guide researchers when defining the scope and policy alternatives of various research approaches.