Thursday, October 14, 2010

Important Reports - well maybe not..

Brilliant. Bloody Brilliant. After all the angst of feeling defensive (see below), I was shuffling around the Internet, doing some reading. The American Association of Wine Economists is a fairly serious operation and produces some pretty comprehensive and voluminous reports. Part statistical and part opinion, the reports are genuinely interesting and normally well worth reading. Current papers include:

- Red, White and “Green”: the Cost of Carbon in the Global Wine Trade
- The Impact of Gurus: Parker Grades and En-Primeur Wine Prices
- What Future for the Champagne Industry?
- Does Drinking Impair College Performance? Evidence from a Regression Discontinuity Approach.

And so on. Some are a little more tenuous in terms of an International arena – for example:
- The Impact of the Wine Industry of Hotels and Restaurants in Walla Walla

But buried deep in their list of current papers is every schoolboy’s dream report. 100% True. Paper 36 is:
- Can People Distinguish Paté from Dog Food?

Wonderful. I love it. You can download it here:

Here's a taster - every pun possible intended:
Considering the similarity of its ingredients, canned dog food could be a suitable and inexpensive substitute for pâté or processed blended meat products such as Spam or liverwurst. However, the social stigma associated with the human consumption of pet food makes an unbiased comparison challenging. To prevent bias, Newman's Own dog food was prepared with a food processor to have the texture and appearance of a liver mousse. In a double-blind test, subjects were presented with five unlabeled blended meat products, one of which was the prepared dog food. After ranking the samples on the basis of taste, subjects were challenged to identify which of the five was dog food.

Of course, every Irish college student with a couple of pints of Guinness and a blindfold to hand has already undertaken this important research!

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