Consumer rights to informed choice on the food market

Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 11 (1):61 - 72 (2008)
The discourse about traceability in food chains focused on traceability as means towards the end of managing health risks. This discourse witnessed a call to broaden traceability to accommodate consumer concerns about foods that are not related to health. This call envisions the development of ethical traceability. This paper presents a justification of ethical traceability. The argument is couched in liberal distinctions, since the call for ethical traceability is based on intuitions about consumer rights to informed choice. The paper suggests that two versions of ethical traceability find justification. The first version of ethical traceability entails that governments ensure that all consumers are provided with foods that respect some threshold level of, e.g., animal welfare that is supported by an overlapping consensus. The second version of ethical traceability entails that food producers provide consumers with products, and sufficient information about these products, that are relevant for reasonable, non-superficial values that are not supported by an overlapping consensus. Governments should facilitate this in the sense that consumers are not provided with misinformation about characteristics of foods that are relevant for reasonable, non-superficial values that are not supported by an overlapping consensus
Keywords Consumer concerns  Food ethics  Informed choice  Liberalism  Traceability
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References found in this work BETA
J. Rawls (1995). Political Liberalism. Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 57 (3):596-598.
Joel Feinberg (1987). Harm to Others. Philosophical Review 96 (2):295-298.

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