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Consumer willingness to pay for low acrylamide content

Harkness, C. and Areal, F. (2018) Consumer willingness to pay for low acrylamide content. British Food Journal, 120 (8). pp. 1888-1900. ISSN 0007-070X

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1108/BFJ-01-2018-0043


Acrylamide is a common dietary exposure present in many baby foods. Evidence of acrylamide causing tumours in rodents has led to the chemical being classified as ‘probably carcinogenic to humans’ by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. The purpose of this paper is to examine consumers’ willingness to pay (WTP) for a reduction in the acrylamide content of baby food and therefore a reduction in the risk of cancer. A discrete choice experiment (DCE) is conducted on UK consumers incorporating different levels of seven attributes: packaging, production method (organic, GM and conventional), acrylamide level, sugar, salt, one of five portions of fruit and vegetable per day and price. Consumer WTP for low acrylamide content is estimated using a mixed logit (MXL) model. The empirical results indicate consumers assign a high value to safer baby food, with low acrylamide content. The WTP premium for baby food with low acrylamide content (105%) is the highest of all attributes assessed. Consumers also have a preference for organically produced baby food, in contrast to an aversion towards GM. The study results indicate that reducing the acrylamide content in baby food is desirable for consumers. This is the first study to estimate consumers’ WTP for reducing the acrylamide content of baby food in the UK. Existing research has been limited to examining the exposure of young children, in addition to the potential health risks.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development > Department of Agri-Food Economics & Marketing
ID Code:76872
Uncontrolled Keywords:Food Science


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