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Consumers' perception of farmed fish and willingness to pay for fish welfare

Hans Stubbe Solgaard (Department of Environmental and Business Economics, University of Southern Denmark, Esbjerg, Denmark)
Yingkui Yang (Department of Environmental and Business Economics, University of Southern Denmark, Esbjerg, Denmark)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Article publication date: 9 August 2011

Abstract

Purpose

Aquaculture is, an important animal farming activity, and fish welfare has recently become an important issue in the EU. Driving forces behind the promotion of fish welfare are demands from retailers and consumers. Given this background, it is the main objective of this paper in a Danish setting to investigate the willingness of consumers to pay for farmed rainbow trout with a quality label certifying good fish welfare. It also aims to describe consumers’ perception and consumption of farmed fish and their beliefs about fish welfare.

Design/methodology/approach

A contingent valuation approach was used to evaluate consumers’ willingness to pay for fish welfare, using an open‐ended elicitation technique. To determine the factors that may influence consumers’ willingness to pay for fish welfare the binomial logit model was used. Data were collected from an online survey of Danish consumers in the spring of 2009, sample size 1,000.

Findings

Of the sample, 48 percent were on average willing to pay 25 percent extra for welfare rainbow trout. Primarily women with a longer education, belonging to higher income households are willing to pay extra, also older consumers are more willing to pay more than younger consumers. Consumers who emphasize eco‐friendly production of welfare fish, freshness, and animal welfare also tend to be willing to pay extra.

Originality/value

While much literature has addressed animal welfare and willingness to pay for it, only a few studies have specifically considered consumers’ perception of fish welfare and their willingness to pay for welfare fish.

Keywords

Citation

Stubbe Solgaard, H. and Yang, Y. (2011), "Consumers' perception of farmed fish and willingness to pay for fish welfare", British Food Journal, Vol. 113 No. 8, pp. 997-1010. https://doi.org/10.1108/00070701111153751

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited