Developing Brands for Patented Fruit Varieties: Does the Name Matter?



Brands have largely been absent for fresh produce products; however, apples are one of a few exceptions whereby varieties partially take the place of brands. Studying the role of brands in this market is particularly interesting given the introduction of several patented or so-called managed apple varieties. We run an experiment to measure consumer response to a suite of apple varieties; treatments employ different branding strategies using different names for a new managed variety included in the experiment. Results suggest that the name does influence consumer valuation of the new variety and existing managed varieties, but has little impact on the willingness to pay for traditional apple varieties.