Beef vs Buffalo Meat - Markets Lead to Inmoral Behavior


#1

When we talk about markets and morals we say that if equilibrium outcomes possess the sought normative properties (Pareto efficiency and some notion of equity), then markets can be said to be moral and to motivate the participants to act in a moral way. What can we say about the meat markets? More specifically about the beef and the buffalo meat market. This isn’t a well known market and because of that must of the people don’t know the big differences between both of them. For this comment I will talk about their nutritional values. The buffalo meat, talking about nutritional values, is better than the beef (see attached image). So let assume an economy where you can only consume beef or buffalo meat where the prices are such that Pb (price of beef) < Pm (price of buffalo meat) and the moral attitude is such that eating healthier is the most moral action. So according to market prices most of the people will prefer to eat beef because it is cheaper than eating buffalo meat, however there will be consumers that prefer buffalo meat because of the nutritional values. So only few people will enjoy of good health, while the rest will suffer of the “inmoral” decision taken because of the market influence.

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