Date of Graduation

8-2019

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Agricultural Economics (MS)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness

Advisor

Alvaro Durand Morat

Committee Member

Lawton Lanier Nalley

Second Committee Member

Rodolfo N. Nayga, Jr.

Third Committee Member

Eric J. Wailes

Keywords

Benin, Choice Experiment, Demand Analysis, Price Elasticity, Rice

Abstract

Rice consumption in Benin is increasing along with shifting consumer demand toward higher quality rice. In this context of changing demands, experimental estimation methods provide an effective way to estimate the current state of consumer preferences. We conducted a hypothetical choice experiment in 15 open markets in Benin to analyze the demand for rice and its substitutes. The results reveal that consumers value quality rice, even those in the low-income class. While high income consumers are more likely to choose high quality imported rice, low- and middle-income consumers are more likely to select high quality domestic rice among the set of rice available. In the high-income group, the demand for high quality imported and domestic rice is price inelastic. High quality domestic rice is almost as likely as high quality imported rice to be selected by urban consumers. In the rural area, consumers are highly responsive to rice price change. Whereas, the demand for rice in the urban area is price inelastic. Consumers are not responsive to corn price changes across the three income groups, although corn is the most likely commodity to be chosen by low- and middle-income consumers. The results suggest that any increase in rice prices could have an untoward effect on rice consumption in urban area.

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