As mentioned in comments above, yeah I agree with this but just assumed that all costs would be funded by donations to try and keep the CEA simple (modelling the cost effectiveness of a for-profit company ended up being more difficult than I thought it would be).
1. That is a good point, I did implicitly try and account for the probability of success when estimating the probability of the different potential scenarios (IF launch, we launch, both launch) in this model, but this was never done explicitly as its own factor. To account for this, we could multiply the expected impact by the expected probability of success (the average food start-up has a ~10% probability of success).
2. Yeah I agree that this would be more realistic, we just assumed that all funding would be donated to make the CEA simpler.
Hi Michael, sorry for the belated response.
You make a lot of interesting points in your comments, some of which I hadn’t considered. As a general point before replying to any specifics, I found it really difficult to model a CEA for a for-profit company so this is definitely by no means perfect as I had to make a lot of weird assumptions to try and make it work, such as assuming that all of the funding would be donated by EA funds rather than met by investors etc. and that we wouldn’t own any shares in the company.
I think you make a good point, though, that financial returns probably should be included in this. Also, again I think you’re right that we could have taken a more in-depth look at the counterfactuals of the co-founders as they definitely could earn-to-give in this position, though as you said they would likely take much lower salaries than the average start-up founder. Both of these factors would make this intervention more cost effective, though I am unsure by how much. Thinking about this, this just makes me more excited for plant-based start-ups to focus on plant-based seafood! Though I still don’t think that CE would be best placed to help this start-up, I think the market would do a much better job.
Yeah this report was split between me doing research into feed fortification in India and George doing research into DO in Taiwan.
That’s a good question, I don’t think it was intentional—probably just the way we both went about modelling things. But I will leave George to answer that properly as to why he used log-normal.
I think that both feed fortification and dissolved oxygen will increase costs for farmers as they will need to pay for the nutrients to supplement feed with or for the aeration equipment, so this could decrease supply and demand.
I do agree, though, that these interventions will improve yields, which as you say could increase supply and demand.
The problem is that I am unsure of the magnitudes of both of these effects so I don’t know what the overall sign for the intervention would be. I think I would still lean towards it decreasing supply and demand overall, though, as I’m unsure of how much yields would improve but I am quite confident that costs of production will increase.
I’m unsure what FIAPO do for enforcement, but HSI/India try to improve enforcement by doing workshops with police departments in various states and districts to help them to understand and learn animal welfare laws and how they can implement them as they think that one of the big barriers to poor enforcement is that it is common for enforcement officers to not be aware of new policies.
I’m unsure about the impact of lobbying the government to spend more on enforcement, but I would be more excited about a charity which focuses on enforcement or giving money to existing orgs so that they can do more work on enforcement as you suggested, but again because of the poor enforcement and how difficult it could be to improve this, I would still probably lean towards this not being the best thing we could do.
You’re right that the Faunalytics report didn’t include Taiwan, but we used the results from Eastern China as a proxy to the attitudes in Taiwan as this was the best option available to us.
Hi Michael, thanks for your comment!
These are interesting ideas that could be worth considering, but you’re definitely right that any interventions that work on a state-wide/nation-wide scale will be very difficult to enforce and this poor enforcement will likely be the limiting factor to the success of any intervention like this. I will make a note of these ideas, though, to have a look into when I next have the chance, thanks!