Projects Funded for Jay Shimshack


Understanding Compliance and Deterrence in a Food Safety Context

Tim Beatty and Jay Shimshack


Specific Objectives of the Project:
We quantify the role regulation and enforcement play in affecting US food safety
outcomes by analyzing previously unstudied administrative data. Research
questions include:
• How do inspections and enforcement actions influence food safety
outcomes at the inspected or sanctioned facility?
• How do inspections and enforcement actions directed towards one facility
influence food safety outcomes at other facilities?
• What confounding factors (i.e. facility characteristics, economic trends)
impact food safety outcomes and facility responsiveness to regulatory actions?
• What data, metrics, and methods can be used to measure deterrence
outcomes in a food safety context?
• How do food recalls and illness outbreaks interact with the regulatory
process to influence food safety outcomes?
In this study our measure of food safety is the levels of microbial contaminants
(e.g. Salmonella E.coli, etc…) detected by Food Safety and Inspection Service
(FSIS) in the course of standard inspections.

Project Report/Summary of Results:
Funds from this project lead to a unique partnership between the USDA-FSIS,
UC Davis, and the University of Virginia to analyze administrative data related to
food safety. As a direct result of the grant we signed a data-sharing MOU with
Preliminary results from this project served as the basis for a USDA-AFRI
proposal, which was funded in the 2018 fiscal year, in the amount of $499,968 –
representing a seventeen-fold return on the Giannini Foundation’s investment.