Economics of Food Labeling

Economics of Food Labeling Federal intervention in food labeling is often proposed with the aim of achieving a social goal such as improving human health and safety, mitigating environmental hazards, averting international trade disputes, or supporting domestic agricultural and food manufacturing industries. Economic theory suggests, however, that mandatory food-labeling requirements are best suited to alleviating problems of asymmetric information and are rarely effective in redressing environmental or other spillovers associated with food production and consumption. Theory also suggests that the appropriate role for government in labeling depends on the type of information involved and the level and distribution of the costs and benefits of providing that information. This report traces the economic theory behind food labeling and presents three case studies in which the government has intervened in labeling and two examples in which government intervention has been proposed. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Consumer Policy Springer Journals

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2001 by Kluwer Academic Publishers
Subject
Law; Commercial Law; Economic Policy; Marketing
ISSN
0168-7034
eISSN
1573-0700
D.O.I.
10.1023/A:1012272504846
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Federal intervention in food labeling is often proposed with the aim of achieving a social goal such as improving human health and safety, mitigating environmental hazards, averting international trade disputes, or supporting domestic agricultural and food manufacturing industries. Economic theory suggests, however, that mandatory food-labeling requirements are best suited to alleviating problems of asymmetric information and are rarely effective in redressing environmental or other spillovers associated with food production and consumption. Theory also suggests that the appropriate role for government in labeling depends on the type of information involved and the level and distribution of the costs and benefits of providing that information. This report traces the economic theory behind food labeling and presents three case studies in which the government has intervened in labeling and two examples in which government intervention has been proposed.

Journal

Journal of Consumer PolicySpringer Journals

Published: Oct 10, 2004

References

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