Weak Beer and Antitrust Economics

Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal brought the story, “Bud Crowded Out by Craft Beer Craze.” While Bud Light is currently the highest selling beer in the United States, the flagship brand Budweiser is fading. The international beverage giant is scrambling to win over younger drinkers to boost Budweiser sales, so the familiar Clydesdale horses are out … More Weak Beer and Antitrust Economics

Marc Gunther Profiles Whole Foods Ceo John Mackey

Michael Giberson Marc Gunther has a good brief profile, “John Mackey: hippie, libertarian, CEO.” I haven’t read Mackey’s new book yet, but may try it this summer. If nothing else, Mackey will provide an interesting counter to Milton Friedman’s famous views on what is now called “corporate social responsibility.” But Gunther’s essay makes an curious … More Marc Gunther Profiles Whole Foods Ceo John Mackey

American Biofuel Policy Increases Hardship on the Guatemalan Poor, and You Help Every Time You Buy Gasoline

Michael Giberson Next time you see one of those “This product may contain up to 10 percent ethanol” stickers on a gas pump, ask yourself why federal government biofuel policies are forcing you to help increase hunger and hardship among poor Guatemalans. Sure, politicians in their comfortable offices in Washington, DC, didn’t intend to help … More American Biofuel Policy Increases Hardship on the Guatemalan Poor, and You Help Every Time You Buy Gasoline

Gmo Bans and Labeling Laws

Lynne Kiesling Tyler Cowen and I have several things in common — wry senses of humor, economist sensibilities, and a strong love of interesting and well-prepared food. Those last two traits at least show up in Tyler’s post yesterday about proposals in California to label foods to indicate whether or not they contain GMOs. Tyler … More Gmo Bans and Labeling Laws

An Austrian Theory of Cooking … or a Cooking Metaphor for Austrian Entrepreneurial Theory

Lynne Kiesling As a fellow cook, food lover, and economist who incorporates Austrian entrepreneurial theory into my work, I love Mike’s post commemorating Julia Child’s birthday today. Let’s push it even further. One way to create value in cooking is through new combinations of what Mike calls “raw elements”. We can think of three categories … More An Austrian Theory of Cooking … or a Cooking Metaphor for Austrian Entrepreneurial Theory

Nutrition Experience, Research, and Orthodoxy, with Some Economics Parallels

Lynne Kiesling Last week was our spring break, and I finally took some time to read Gary Taubes’ 2008 book Good Calories, Bad Calories. Taubes is an investigative science journalist who has been writing for years about the science of nutrition and epidemiology, and the book focuses on a long, careful, detailed narrative about how … More Nutrition Experience, Research, and Orthodoxy, with Some Economics Parallels

A Secret to Chipotle’s Good-food-fast Innovations

Michael Giberson At Slate, Matthew Yglesias tells the story of a business that is booming: Chipotle’s Mexican Grill, “a company that shows there‚Äôs clearly room for growth and innovation in even the most basic sectors of the economy.” The chain has been expanding rapidly, Chipotle’s stock has risen 500 percent over 5 years, and yet: … More A Secret to Chipotle’s Good-food-fast Innovations

Biking and Climbing and Driving … and Eating!

Lynne Kiesling I am just back from a long weekend trip to Denver, to participate in Sunday’s Deer Creek Challenge bike ride. We did the metric century — 62 miles, with 7,022′ of elevation gain along the way. Pretty daunting for a flatlander! But this event was my “A race” (although not a race, but … More Biking and Climbing and Driving … and Eating!

The Unsustainable Fair Trade Business Model

Michael Giberson Colleen Haight examines the past and present of Fair Trade-certified coffee and wonders whether it has a future in “The Problem with Fair Trade Coffee,” published at the Stanford Social Innovation Review. The title probably should have been “Problems,” plural, as more than one problem gets explored in the article. I’ve argued in … More The Unsustainable Fair Trade Business Model

Things That Caught My Eye: Subsidies, Wine, Leds, Dismal Economists

Lynne Kiesling As a coda to Mike’s post yesterday regarding the CRS study of the effects of removing oil subsidies on gasoline prices, here’s Ron Bailey at Reason reminding us that ethanol subsidies are almost triple those to the oil companies, and with little to show either environmentally, economically, or energetically. Courtesy of Dr. Vino, … More Things That Caught My Eye: Subsidies, Wine, Leds, Dismal Economists