The valorization of an agro-food product is an articulated process that interacts with different variables and goes beyond the strictly economic dimension of the business system. Quality products, in particular, are closely related to the environment and to landscape, biodiversity culture and traditions. The valorization of the product in this case is conditioned by several factors that cannot be explained exclusively by normal value of use as measured by the market price. The topic, therefore, is discussed from the viewpoint of economic analysis, identifying various lines which developed, with a more thorough use of standard models, in order to contextualize the issue within parameters which make reference to reputation and convention theories and the quality of social construction. The work focuses, too, on the debate regarding the proper conceptual approach and on the methodology for differentiating collective brands from distinctive ones. Then we move on to a brief review of the legislation on certified products. Finally, valorization strategies for quality-branded agro-food products inspired by analysis of the economic sector, with specific regard to Italian agro-food products.
Keywords: Social constructing of quality, collective marks, distinctive marks, typical product, food quality
Jel Code: D82, D86, Q13, Q18