Assessing Consumers' Valuation of Cosmetically Damaged Apples Using a Mixed Probit Model
A mixed probit model was applied to survey data to analyzeconsumers’willingnessto buy apples with cosmetic damage caused by the sooty blotch and flyspeck (SBFS) disease complex. The analysis finds consumers will pay a premium for organic production methods and for apples with low amounts of SBFS damage. Behavioral variables such as experience in growing fruit significantly affect the willingness to buy applesofdifferentdamagelevels.Consumers’toleranceofveryblemishedapplesis limited and they trade off production technology attributes for cosmetic appearance. Better understanding of this trade-offisimportanttoorganicproducers’decisionsabout disease control.