Heterogeneous Consumer Reactions to Health News

21 Pages Posted: 21 Apr 2020

See all articles by Martin Browning

Martin Browning

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics

sinne smed

University of Copenhagen

Date Written: March 2019


We investigate heterogeneity in how consumers react to health‐related media information. Our specific focus is on news relating to fish and the consumption of different types of fish. We specify a dynamic empirical model that allows for pervasive heterogeneity in all basic parameters of consumer behavior, as well as in how consumers react to information. We estimate the model using a unique household panel tracking consumption, prices, news stories, and media habits over 24 quarters. We find that only 16% of consumers react to news that is specific to fatty fish. These consumers have a large reaction to such news, with a modest initial over‐reaction. Furthermore, these consumers are also more attentive to general media information about the healthiness of fish.

Keywords: Consumer behaviour, health news, pervasive heterogeneity

Suggested Citation

Browning, Martin and smed, sinne, Heterogeneous Consumer Reactions to Health News (March 2019). American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Vol. 101, Issue 2, pp. 579-599, 2019, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3578918 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ajae/aay055

Martin Browning (Contact Author)

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics ( email )

Ă˜ster Farimagsgade 5
Bygning 26
1353 Copenhagen K.
(45) 35-32-30-70 (Phone)
(45) 35-32-30-64 (Fax)

Sinne Smed

University of Copenhagen

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