The Canadian Demand for Meats

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  • The demand for meat in Canada is examined in a manner similar to previous work by Chen and Veeman, Moschini and Meilke, and Reynolds and Goddard. The current effort differs from previous studies in two important ways. First, beef demand is disaggregated into ground beef and table cut beef. This should allow a more detailed understanding of beef demand and beef products' relation to other meats. Second, Canadian livestock production costs and trade are incorporated in the calculation of demand estimates. This is motivated by previous findings of significant shifts in Canadian consumers' meat preferences sometime in the 1970s. If shocks to the supply side during the decade of the 1970s are the culprits driving the findings of shifting preferences, then incorporating them in the calculation of demand estimates should reveal the structural change findings as artifacts caused by ignoring supply and trade. Results show that, as they typically estimated, ground and table cut beef are very different products in comparison. Ground beef is more expenditure elastic and less own-price elastic than table cut beef. Both products compete about equally with pork, but ground beef is more substitutable for chicken. Demands also appear to have undergone a significant shift in 1978. Incorporating the supply side and trade in estimation of Canadian meat demands produces significantly better estimates and causes the apparent differences between ground and table cut beef and all structural shifts to disappear. The implications for producers and processors of red meats are that it is in improved production and marketing efficiencies that the chicken producers and processors are winning the battle for market share of the Canadian consumers' declining food budget.

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    Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 International