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Agricultural News

OSU FooDS Survey Shows Willingness to Pay for Steak Tops $8- a Two Year High

Mon, 27 Apr 2015 05:10:38 CDT

OSU FooDS Survey Shows Willingness to Pay for Steak Tops $8- a Two Year High The monthly Foods Survey conducted by Oklahoma State University's Dr. Jayson Lusk and his team shows that consumers are currently willing to pay more for both steak and chicken breasts than at any other time int he two year life of the ongoing survey. According to the FooDS webpage- "The purpose of this project is to track consumer preferences and sentiments on the safety, quality, and price of food consumed at home and away from home. The project will track consumer awareness of food-related issues and events. Moreover, the project will track and index consumer demand for several retail meat products." The full year two summary can be seen by clicking here.

Willingness-to-pay (WTP) for two beef, chicken and pork products, in addition to two non-meat items, has been calculated each month since the beginning of FooDS. The WTP for each product in each month is reported as an index value set relative to May 2013- the price in May 2013 being called the baseline or a score of 100. For example, the WTP index for steak in April 2015 was 126.44, meaning WTP in April 2015 was (126.44 100 = 26.44) 26.44% higher than in May 2013. WTP for steak and chicken breast were at their highest in April 2015. The Willingness to pay for beef, pork, and chicken have generally been higher this year compared to last.

At home food-grocery expenditures reached a low of $92.96/week in September 2014, and a high of $97.05/week in April 2015. Consumers reported spending the least on food away from home in June 2014 at $46.89/week and the highest in April 2015 at $53.02/week. Consumers continually reported planning to spend less money away from home throughout the course of the survey, although, they frequently do not follow through with those plans.

In the monthly surveys over the last year- Consumers expected to see higher meat prices each month, especially for beef, although the extent of these expectations varied across months, reaching a high for beef and pork in June 2014. Consumers reported that they planned to buy more chicken in each month and less pork. In December and February a larger percentage of respondents planned to buy more beef than planned to buy less.

Awareness and concern for 17 food issues have been tracked over the course of the survey. GMOs, Salmonella, E. coli, and hormones have remained the top four issues consumers report hearing most about in the news. A significant increase in awareness was seen for Salmonella from August 2014 through September 2014 and a decrease in E. coli in March 2015. GMOs, Salmonella, E. coli, and hormones also remained as the issues of most concern among consumers in the past year.

Dr. Lusk also asked consumers about what the survey calls "General Food Values." Taste, safety, price, and nutrition have remained consumer's top four values throughout the course of the FooDS survey, while fairness and novelty have remained the values of least concern. Consumers reported that finding affordable foods to fit with-in their budget was their main challenge each month. Consumers reported that finding foods their children will eat was their least difficult challenge each month. The challenge of losing weight saw the largest increase in January.

The monthly survey since last spring has asked questions about using Food Stamps and also about being a vegetarian. Over the course of the year- the survey showed from 17% to 21% of the respondents were using Food Stamps, while the question about being a vegan topped out at 6.5% in February of this year- most of the numbers on being a vegetarian or vegan had a four in front of them- in other words- around four percent claiming to not include meat or animal based products in their diet.

To review each monthly survey- click here and there are links to all 24 reports that have been produced to date by the Department of Ag Economics at Oklahoma State University.



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