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Journal of Agricultural & Food Industrial Organization

Ed. by Azzam, Azzeddine

CiteScore 2017: 0.76

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Structure and Food Price Inflation

Ilya Rahkovsky
  • Research Economist, Food Economics Division, USDA-Economic Research Service, Washington, DC, USA
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/ Richard Volpe
  • Corresponding author
  • Assistant Professor, Agribusiness Department, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, CA 93407, USA
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Published Online: 2017-02-28 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jafio-2017-0004


We pair Nielsen TDLinx data, 2004–2014, with Consumer Price Index data to investigate how changes in food retail market structure drive food price inflation. We find, in corroboration with much of the evidence to date, that market concentration is positively and significantly associated with higher food prices. We find the same to be true for store format concentration, or the homogeneity of food markets. As the market shares, or penetration, of supercenters, warehouse stores, limited assortment stores, and superettes increase at expense of traditional supermarkets, food price inflation decreases.

Keywords: food retail; CPI; food price inflation; market structure

Correction Note

Correction added after online publication February 28, 2017: The views expressed in this paper are those of the authors and may not be attributed to USDA or ERS.


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About the article

Published Online: 2017-02-28

Citation Information: Journal of Agricultural & Food Industrial Organization, Volume 16, Issue 1, 20170004, ISSN (Online) 1542-0485, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jafio-2017-0004.

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