Buyer and Seller Responses to an Adverse Food Safety Event: The Case of Frozen Salmon in Alberta


L. Maynard, S. Saghaian, and M. Nickoloff

Fish is a low-fat protein source high in omega-3 fatty acids, but in 2004 consumers also heard that farmed salmon had high levels of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCBs). This research evaluated how Canadian consumers and processors reacted to the confilicting health messages. Demand estimates and time-series analysis of 2001-2006 frozen meat scanner data in Alberta, Canada show a significant drop in salmon expenditure share following the PCB finding. The industry responded by launching low-priced wild salmon products, which contributed to significant demand expansion. The analysis illustrates how a food safety threat was averted and even served as a catalyst for growth.

Key Words: salmon, scanner data, food safety, demand, directed acyclic graphs

* Leigh Maynard is an Associate Professor, Sayed Saghaiaan is an Assistant Professor, and Megan Nickoloff is a Graduate Research Assistant in the Department of Agricultural Economics at the University of Kentucky.

This paper is published in the International Food and and Agribusiness Management Review, Volume 11, Issue 1, 2008.

For More Information

For additional information, please contact, Leigh Maynard or Sayed Saghaian.

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