Stated Willingness-to-pay for organic fruit and pesticide ban:an evaluation using both web-based and face-to-face interviewing

Taylor and Francis
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Food Products Marketing, 2005, 11 (3), pp. 107 - 134
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Income growth in highly industrialised countries has resulted in consumer choice of foodstuffs no longer being primarily influenced by basic factors such as price and organoleptic features. From this perspective, the present study sets out to evaluate how and to what extent consumer choice is influenced by the possible negative effects on health and environment caused by the consumption of fruit containing deposits of pesticides and chemical products. The study describes the results of a survey which explores and estimates consumer willingness to pay in two forms: a yearly contribution for the abolition of the use of pesticides on fruit, and a premium price for organically grown apples guaranteed by a certified label. The same questionnaire was administered to two samples. The first was a conventional face-to-face survey of customers of large retail outlets located around Bologna (Italy); the second was an Internet sample. The discrete choice data were analysed by means of probit and tobit models to estimate the utility consumers attribute to organically grown fruit and to a pesticide ban. The research also addresses questions of validity and representativeness as a fundamental problem in web-based surveys.
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