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The causal impact of HACCP on seafood imports in the U.S.: An application of difference-in-differences within the gravity model

Rui Chen, Valentina Hartarska and Norbert L.W. Wilson

Food Policy, 2018, vol. 79, issue C, 166-178

Abstract: We offer a difference-in-differences (DID) approach to assess the causal effect of Hazard Analysis by Critical Control Points (HACCP), a food safety regulation, on U.S. seafood imports with a gravity model and event-specific changes. With a panel database of U.S. seafood imports from 217 partner countries from 1991 to 2006, we employ a causal framework of analysis with a “treatment group” of U.S. seafood imports and two alternative control groups (U.S. food imports outside of HACCP rules and the European Union's 15 seafood imports). Further, we assess the effects of HACCP on the intensive and extensive margins of U.S. seafood imports. Contrary to previous work, we find that HAACP implementation has no effect on the flow of U.S. seafood imports, while the estimates of the other key variables are consistent across the models seen in previous work. Thus, we find evidence that non-tariff measures like HACCP had net null effect on imports, though the distribution of imports shifted.

Keywords: Difference-in-differences; HACCP; Seafood; Trade; Gravity model; Food safety (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q17 Q18 F14 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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DOI: 10.1016/j.foodpol.2018.07.003

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