Pricing U.S. North Atlantic bluefin tuna and implications for management



Bluefin tuna is regarded as a high-quality product in the Japanese market and is characterized by an unusual marketing system by seafood industry standards. Each fish is individually inspected for various quality attributes before being flown to Japan for the fresh tuna market. The first objective of this study is to formally evaluate the degree to which the price of U.S. fresh bluefin tuna is determined by quality attributes of each fish, rather than by just the quantity supplied. This is accomplished using a Hedonic model. The results support the hypothesis that the fresh bluefin tuna price is, in fact, significantly influenced by the quality attributes of the fish, including the freshness, fat content, color, and shape. Interesting implications for public management of this highly valued resource arise from the results. [Econ-Lit citation: L150, L190, L660] © 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.