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Is There a Market for Branded Gulf of Mexico Oysters?

Mississippi State University Department of Agricultural Economics Working Paper No. 15-4

42 Pages Posted: 18 Nov 2015  

Daniel R. Petrolia

Mississippi State University - Department of Agricultural Economics

William Walton

Auburn University - Alabama Cooperative Extension System

Lauriane Yehouenou

Mississippi State University - Department of Agricultural Economics

Date Written: November 17, 2015

Abstract

We administered an online choice experiment to a sample of U.S. raw oyster consumers to identify factors influencing preferences for Gulf of Mexico oysters, and to estimate willingness-to-pay for specific attributes, including harvest location/brand, price, size, taste (saltiness), and cultivation method (wild vs. farm-raised). This work was complemented by taste panels conducted in Point Clear (Alabama), Houston, and Chicago. During taste panels, local branded varieties dominate consumer choice, although these same varieties fare no better than other varieties under blind taste-tests. Online survey results indicate that Non-Gulf respondents are likely to require a price discount on Gulf varieties relative to local varieties, on the order of $3-9 per half-dozen, depending on the specific variety and other factors. Although most Gulf respondents chose the cheaper generic Gulf oyster over branded Gulf varieties, we still estimate positive price premia for branded Gulf varieties of up to $5 per half-dozen.

Keywords: branding, choice experiment, consumer preferences, economics, labeling, survey, willingness to pay

JEL Classification: D12, Q22

Suggested Citation

Petrolia, Daniel R. and Walton, William and Yehouenou, Lauriane, Is There a Market for Branded Gulf of Mexico Oysters? (November 17, 2015). Mississippi State University Department of Agricultural Economics Working Paper No. 15-4. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2692175 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2692175

Daniel R. Petrolia (Contact Author)

Mississippi State University - Department of Agricultural Economics ( email )

Box 5187
Mississippi State, MS 39762
United States

William Walton

Auburn University - Alabama Cooperative Extension System ( email )

United States

Lauriane Yehouenou

Mississippi State University - Department of Agricultural Economics ( email )

Box 5187
Mississippi State, MS 39762
United States

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