Several trends bring greater demand for farm-level quality assurance. Consumer demand for specific product attributes and reliable product quality and safety is growing. This trend, together with increased public regulation or legal liability for food processors and retailers, creates derived demand for quality assurance in farm production. At the same time, expanded international trade in processed-food products brings a need for quality assurance that can be widely recognized. Yet basic questions about farm-level quality assurance remain unanswered. What measures are needed to ensure food safety in farm-level production? What kind of institutions can most efficiently certify safety and quality assurance? Will improved quality increase demand for some products, and who will capture those gains? Is there a public role to facilitate the markets for quality and safety? This article will explore these questions by reviewing economics of quality and safety assurance at the farm level, examples of institutional innovation that are currently underway in the U.S. pork industry, and implications of potential efforts to control microbial pathogens on farms.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
- Economics and Econometrics