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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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Agricultural Marketing Specialist Teaching at NMSU

LAS CRUCES - Jay Lillywhite, an agricultural economist with interests in value-added food marketing and natural resource economics, has joined the faculty at New Mexico State University.

Lillywhite comes to NMSU from Purdue University, where he completed his doctoral coursework. His dissertation research was on using surveys to estimate consumer demand for products new to the market.

"Traditionally, economists have used historical data to estimate consumer demand, but this type of data is often not available with products that are new to the market," he said. "In these cases, using survey data can provide important consumer preference information that otherwise could not be obtained."

He has also researched niche marketing for ethnic foods. One of his projects dealt with marketing fresh goat meat to Minnesota's Somali populations. Somalis observe Muslim dietary laws that prescribe slaughtering practices different from those used by major goat meat exporters in Australia and New Zealand, he said.

"Ethnic food sales have been a growth area but a topic that hasn't been studied as much as other types of marketing," Lillywhite said. "My research dealt niche marketing opportunities for ethnic foods."

His other research interests include marketing natural gas in Western U.S. pipelines.

From 1998 to 2000, Lillywhite was a teaching specialist and assistant professor for the University of Minnesota, working on the campus of Southwest State University in Marshall, Minn. He was director of the Southwest Center for Economic Education, lecturer for agribusiness management and economics courses, and co-adviser for the Agribusiness/Agronomy Club.

He was a research assistant at Iowa State University from 1995 to 1998, where he worked on the university's annual land value survey and oversaw state surveys of farm sizes, management and operations.

At NMSU, Lillywhite teaches marketing courses in the agricultural economics and agricultural business department.

Lillywhite grew up on his grandfather's farm in northern Utah. He earned a bachelor's degree in economics from Brigham Young University in 1992 and a master's degree in economics from Utah State University in 1994. He is completing his dissertation with Purdue.