Quality standards versus nutritional taxes: Health welfare impacts with strategic firms
Journal of Health Economics
Volume 50, December 2016, Pages 268-285
May 27 2016
|The goal of this paper is to better understand firms' strategic reactions to nutritional policies targeting food quality improvements and to derive optimal policies. We propose a model of product differentiation, taking into account the taste and health characteristics of products. We study how two firms react to alternative policies: an MQS policy, linear taxation of the two goods on the market, and taxation of the lowquality good. The MQS and the taxation of the low-quality product are the preferred options by a social planner. If taste is moderately important, the MQS policy is chosen by a populist and a paternalist social planner. If taste is a major component of choice, the populist planner chooses to tax the low-quality product whereas the paternalist planner prefers the MQS policy. Finally, for a paternalist social planner, an MQS-based policy always allows for higher levels of welfare than an information policy alone.
|Authors at SUSFANS
I18, L13, Q18
taxation, MQS, product di erentiation, strategic pricing, nutritional policy