Willingness to Pay for Enhanced Mandatory Labelling of Genetically Modified Soybean Oil: Evidence from a Choice Experiment in China.
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This study investigates consumers' preferences for mandatory labelling conveying the health and safety attributes of genetically modified soybean oil. The enhanced mandatory labelling includes allergen presence labelling, nutrient and compositional change labelling and traceability codes. The data were collected from a consumer survey in the eastern, central and western regions of China, with a total sample size of 804 respondents. We evaluated consumer willingness to pay (WTP) for enhanced mandatory labelling using a choice experiment approach. The results show that Chinese consumers are most favorable to traceability codes with a WTP of RMB 8.92, followed by allergen presences labelling, with RMB 6.57. Eastern consumers would like to pay a higher premium for the three types of enhanced mandatory labelling information, while central consumers only show a positive preference for traceability codes. The results imply that the efforts and policy strategies for enhanced mandatory labelling will benefit residents. Further studies can be expended to other genetically modified (GM) foods. This study provides information for the agency to improve mandatory GM food labelling management. This paper contributes to the growing body of the GM food literature by explicitly investigating consumer preference and WTP for mandatory labelling conveying the health and safety attributes of the GM foods.