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Relationship between cognitive and affective processes, and willingness to pay for pesticide‐free and GMO‐free labeling

Carola Grebitus and Ellen Van Loo

Agricultural Economics, 2022, vol. 53, issue 3, 407-421

Abstract: Research has suggested to not solely include cognitive processes but also affective processes in economic choice modeling. Studying Medjool dates, we conducted a laboratory experiment combining choice experiments and eye‐tracking to account for cognitive processes. In addition, participants indicated their level of worry related to production practices to account for affective processes. Our results show that consumers worry more about pesticide residues than genetic modification in foods. They also pay more attention to labels related to these production practices compared to other labels; and the production practice labels received the highest willingness to pay (WTP). Results from linear regressions show that both cognitive and affective processes are associated with WTP. Especially in the full model for WTP for pesticide‐free labeling an increase of attention by 1 s increases WTP on average by $0.10 and an increase of the level of worry from one category to the next increases WTP on average by $0.17. Overall, results show that including both cognitive and affective processes as explanatory variables is important when determining factors associated with WTP.

Date: 2022
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