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Fair-Trade Coffee, Nebraska Bottle Bill, and Process Innovation Efficiency in the Canadian Food Manufacturing

Vahid Omidvar, University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Abstract

This dissertation examines the market and welfare impacts of three important policies and strategies affecting the, increasingly industrialized, agri-food marketing system. The first essay, Fair-Trade Coffee, examines the impact of the Fair Trade regime on coffee producers‘ welfare. The world coffee market has undergone a significant transformation in the past couple of decades: prices in producing countries have been declining while prices in consuming countries have been soaring. Fair Trade organizations have tried to address this price imbalance by providing an alternative method of trading aimed at increasing the prices received by coffee farmers. Despite their noble objectives, Fair Trade movements have had limited success in improving farmers welfare, however. This essay utilizes a novel framework of heterogeneous producers and relevant market information to provide insights on the market and welfare impacts of the Fair Trade regime when important idiosyncrasies of the Fair Trade production and marketing are included in the analysis. ^ The objective of the second essay, Nebraska Bottle Bill, is to evaluate consumers welfare when a mandatory deposit on recyclable containers is applied in Nebraska. Nebraska is a throwaway society whose total and per-capita waste production has been increasing significantly for more than forty years. A bottle bill is an effective recycling program that encourages recycling rates greater than 90%. However, there are many opponents to bottle bills in the U.S. and these opponents argue that bottle bills and similar laws reduce consumers‘ welfare. This essay uses a Dynamic Almost Ideal Demand System (DAIDS) to evaluate the impact of the bottle bill on consumers‘ welfare in Nebraska. ^ The third essay, Process Innovation Efficiency in the Canadian Food Manufacturing, evaluates the process innovation efficiency of food manufacturing firms in the prairie and western provinces in Canada. The level of productivity and efficiency in agriculture and the food processing industry play a crucial role in determining the welfare of producers and consumers in an economy. This study‘s intention is to obtain a reliable and up-to-date measure of the performance of Canadian Food manufacturing by measuring its productivity in creating new process innovations. ^

Subject Area

Economics, Agricultural

Recommended Citation

Omidvar, Vahid, "Fair-Trade Coffee, Nebraska Bottle Bill, and Process Innovation Efficiency in the Canadian Food Manufacturing" (2012). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3546205.
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/dissertations/AAI3546205

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