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Abstract

This paper investigates the effect of in-store services on retail food prices, supermarket competition, and demand using fluid milk as a case study. It is shown that higher-service supermarkets charge higher milk prices essentially because of an increase in market power due to differentiation of service offering. Results show that different types of services impact milk prices differently, that upscale food-retailers face stronger competition in newer services, and that service competition results in a trade-off for the consumer between the attractiveness of the enhanced retail configuration and the increase in prices.

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