Pre-Empting Public Regulation with Private Food Quality Standards
Posted: 15 Feb 2010
There has been a great deal of recent growth in the area of private food quality standards. This article analyses the incentives for setting private quality standards before governments do so. Since food quality standards are generally multifaceted, different types of standards will affect revenues differently. Our model shows that private firms can pre-empt public regulation by setting their own private food quality standards in order to choose the type of standards that minimises their costs. The emergence of private food standards in grocery retailing is discussed in this context.
Keywords: food quality, private standards, threat of regulation
JEL Classification: L59, Q13
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