The Importance of Governance Levels in Alternative Food Networks: The Case of Red Meat Inspection Rules

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Focusing on U.S. red meat inspection regulations, in the context of alternative food networks (AFNs), we explore the implications of different levels of governmental governance for the number of red meat slaughter establishments in the United States. We argue that disaggregating “the state” makes possible a more nuanced consideration of the effects of different tiers of governance. We use regression analysis with data for 40 U.S. states over 40 years to examine the effects of state (subnational) inspection programs and implementation of the federal Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) regulations on the number of slaughter establishments by type. In this analysis we test two common beliefs among AFN actors: that state inspection helps, and HACCP hurts, small slaughter establishments. It also allows us to make a case for disaggregating governance tiers as we find that state inspection programs and HACCP have significant and opposite effects on the number of federally and non–federally inspected slaughter establishments. Our analysis supports the belief that state inspection is important to small slaughter establishments, but does not support the belief that HACCP has had a negative effect on them. Our conclusion is that agrifood scholars need to pay attention to different forms of governmental governance even with the increased focus on private and third-party certifications.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Denny, RCH; Worosz, MR; Wilson, NLW

Published Date

  • December 1, 2016

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 81 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 601 - 634

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0036-0112

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1111/ruso.12103

Citation Source

  • Scopus