International comparisons of product supply chains in the agro-food sectors: determinants of their competitiveness and performance on EU and international markets
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Competitiveness and performance of EU agri-food chains

Author(s): H. Hockmann, I. Levkovych, A. Grau

Competitiveness is one of the most important topics for research and publication in the field of business and management in the world today. Global and national developments such as globalisation, increase of competition on the world and EU markets, changes in national (CAP) and international (WTO) agricultural and trade policies, economic crises, e.g. the food price hikes of 2008, and changing consumer preferences, all created new requirements for the agri-food sector and policy makers. In particular, the competitiveness of the agricultural sector, which has in general been largely protected in developed countries, is central, given the potential consequences if protection is reduced. Correspondingly, competitiveness finds its expression in the formulation of policy objectives. This book provides an analysis of main determinants that contribute to the competitiveness of EU agri-food supply chains by comparing different supply chains and different EU countries.

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Economic effects of reorganising an agro-food supply chain: some evidence from Poland

Author(s): Jan Falkowski
Date of publication: September, 2015
Contributing institution(s): University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland
Published by: Journal of Organizational Change Management, Vol. 28 Iss: 5, pp.704 – 723

Abstract: – Much has been said about the nature of the agro-food supply chain. Yet, the consequences of reforming supply chain institutions have less often been studied, especially from an empirical perspective. The purpose of this paper is to examine the economic consequences of a radical reorganisation of the system of exchange in the agro-food sector in Central and Eastern Europe, during the process of transition from a centrally planned economy to a market economy. By considering a historical example from the dairy sector in Poland, the author provides evidence that the disorganisation of vertical linkages between upstream and downstream producers can be very costly. The most conservative estimates suggest that the dislocation of inter-firm relationships accounted for approximately 20 per cent of the drop in milk production observed in the early-transition phase in question. The most conservative estimates suggest that the dislocation to inter-firm relationships accounted for approximately 20 per cent of the fall in milk production observed in the early-transition phase.

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Productivity in agri-food processes

Author(s): Heinrich Hockmann
Date of publication: August, 2015
Contributing institution(s): Institute for agricultural Development in Transition economies (IAMO)
Published by: International innovation, Issue 189– At what cost? pp. 96-98, online publication

The project coordinator Prof. Dr. Heinrich Hockmann (IAMO) shares the details of COMPETE work towards better understanding the competitiveness of the European agri-food supply chains.

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Does Enlargement Has Caused Intra and Extra European Union Agri-Food Trade?

Author(s): Štefan Bojnec, Imre Fertő
Date of publication: February, 2015
Contributing institution(s): University of Primorska, Faculty of Management, Slovenia; Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences; Corvinus University of Budapest, Hungary
Published by: Bulgarian Journal of Agricultural Science,V. 21, No 1, 2015, pp. 1-15

The article investigates agri-food trade of the European Union (EU-27) countries in two market segments: intra-EU markets vs. total agri-food trade. The EU-27 agri-food exports have increased on both market segments. In a spite of fastest agrifood export growth by new member states (NMS), old member states (OMS) have dominant position in the EU-27 agri-food exports. Around 70% of the EU-27 agri-food exports are on the intra-EU-27 markets. The survival rates for agri-food exports are higher for the OMS than the NMS. The NMS have increased agri-food exports of new varieties/products. Specific results by country are found in evolution and structures of agri-food exports. Following the enlargement, the NMS have increased intra-EU exports, horizontal and high vertical intra-industry trade.

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Agri-Food Export Competitiveness in European Union Countries

Author(s): Štefan Bojnec, Imre Fertő
Date of publication: 29 October 2014
Contributing institution(s): University of Primorska, Faculty of Management, Slovenia; Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences; Corvinus University of Budapest, Hungary
Published by: Journal of Common Market Studies, online publication, DOI: 10.1111/jcms.12215

This article investigates the competitiveness of agri-food exports of the European Union (EU-27) countries on global markets, using the revealed comparative advantage (B) index over the years 2000–11. Panel unit root tests, mobility index and the Kaplan-Meier survival rates of the B index are used. The majority of agri-food products in the EU-27 countries show a comparative disadvantage on global markets. The B indices of the EU-27 countries tend to convergence. Most of the old EU-15 Member States experienced a greater number of agri-food products having a longer duration of revealed comparative advantages than have most of the new EU-12 Member States. Among the most successful Member States in agri-food export competitiveness on global markets are the Netherlands, France and Spain.

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Meat export competitiveness of European Union countries on global markets

Author(s): Štefan Bojnec, Imre Fertő
Date of publication: 2014
Contributing institution(s): University of Primorska, Faculty of Management, Slovenia; Institute of Economics, Hungarian Academy of Sciences; Corvinus University, Hungary
Published by: Agricultural and Food Science , Vol. 23, No 3, 2014, pp. 194 – 206

This paper provides the insight into the export competitiveness of meat products of the European Union (EU-27) member states on global markets. The revealed comparative advantage index is used to analyze the levels, compositions, and evolutions in patterns of development in the export competitiveness of meat products and their levels of stability at the product level. Except for some niche meat products, a larger number of the EU-27 member states have experienced comparative disadvantages on global markets over the analysed years of 2000 to 2011. The revealed comparative advantages on the global markets are the most robust for Ireland, Spain, the Netherlands, France, Belgium, Denmark, Poland, Cyprus and Hungary. The revealed comparative advantage indices and their survival rates differ across the meat product groups. The heterogeneity in export competitiveness of the EU-27 member states suggests the importance of the differentiation of meat products in competitive export specialization on global markets.

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Agri-food exports from European Union Member States using constant market share analysis

Author(s): Štefan Bojnec, Imre Fertő
Date of publication: 2014
Contributing institution(s): University of Primorska, Faculty of Management, Slovenia; Institute of Economics, Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences
Published by: Studies in Agricultural Economics, 116 (2014) 82-86

The 27 European Union (EU) Member States increased their total agri-food exports during the period 2000-2011. However, despite agri-food exports having grown, the shares of the world agri-food markets of 13 EU Member States and the EU-27 as a whole have declined. Those with increasing market share are mainly among the Eastern EU Member States. Constant market share analysis by 27 EU Member States suggests that the structural effects in agri-food and dairy exports are more important than the residual and second order effects. The declining market share is largely associated with negative residual and second order effects. Large positive structural effects cannot compensate for the impact of negative residual and second order effects and this results in declining agri-food market shares.

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Quality of institutions and the BRIC countries agro-food exports

Author(s): Štefan Bojnec, Imre Fertő, József Fogarasi
Date of publication: 2014
Contributing institution(s): University of Primorska, Faculty of Management, Slovenia; Institute of Economics, Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences; Research Institute of Agricultural Economics, Budapest, Hungary
Published by: China Agricultural Economic Review, Vol. 6 Iss: 3, pp.379 – 394

The paper investigates the impacts of institutional quality (IQ) in exporting and importing countries on agro-food exports from the world's leading emerging economies: Brazil, the Russian Federation, India and China (BRIC countries). Measuring is based on using the gravity trade model and econometric panel data analysis for the period 1998-2009. Agro-food exports from the BRIC countries, particularly Brazil and China, have increased. The Russian Federation has experienced stagnating and volatile patterns. Brazil and India have strengthened market shares in the existing importing markets, while the Russian Federation has experienced severe deterioration. The export of existing products is more important than of new products. Agro-food exports are positively associated with IQ and the size of the gross domestic product in exporting and importing countries, but negatively with distance.

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Spatial product market integration between two small open neighbouring economies

Author(s): Zoltán Bakucs, Štefan Bojnec, Imre Fertő
Date of publication: 26/08/2014
Contributing institution(s): Institute of Economics, Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences; Corvinus University of Budapest; University of Primorska, Faculty of Management, Slovenia
Published by: Agribusiness: an International Journal; published online

The paper contributes with an in-depth investigation of spatial wheat producer market integration between two neighboring countries, net exporting Hungary and net importing Slovenia. One of the key features of this spatial producer price transmission is the very important role Hungary plays in supplying wheat to Slovenia. Using monthly data from January 2000 to April 2011, spatial price transmission is analyzed from a number of perspectives, using a wealth of econometric techniques in order to shed light upon the degree of integration, adjustment asymmetries and the role of market share upon price transmission. Empirical results rejected the validity of the Law of One Price, identified Hungary as the price-leading market, confirmed competitive symmetric price adjustment, and emphasized the role of Hungarian market share in total Slovenian imports with respect to wheat price transmission elasticity. The results imply that wheat producer prices in both of the analyzed countries tend to be internationally determined. Hungarian exports are unable to price discriminate in wheat trade between the two neighboring markets.

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Export competitiveness of dairy products on global markets: The case of the European Union countries

Author(s): Štefan Bojnec, Imre Fertő
Date of publication: 23/07/2014
Contributing institution(s): University of Primorska, Faculty of Management, Slovenia; Institute of Economics, Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences
Published by: Journal of Dairy Science; published online

The paper analyzed the export competitiveness of dairy products of the European Union (EU) countries (EU-27) on intra-EU, extra-EU, and global markets, using the revealed comparative advantage index over the 2000–2011 period. The results indicated that about half of the EU-27 countries have had competitive exports in a certain segment of dairy products. The results differed by level of milk processing and for intra-EU and extra-EU markets. Belgium, Denmark, France, Ireland, and the Netherlands are old EU-15 countries with competitive dairy exports. The majority of the new EU-12 countries have faced difficulties in maintaining their level of export competitiveness, at least for some dairy products and market segments. The more competitive EU-12 countries in dairy exports were the Baltic States (Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania) and Poland. The duration of export competitiveness differed across the dairy groups of products according to the level of milk processing, indicating the importance of dairy chain product differentiation for export competitiveness and specialization. The export competitiveness of the higher level of processed milk products for final consumption can be significant for export dairy chain competitiveness on global markets.

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Forestry industry trade by degree of wood processing in the enlarged European Union countries

Author(s): Štefan Bojnec, Imre Fertő
Date of publication: 11/01/2014
Contributing institution(s): University of Primorska, Faculty of Management, Slovenia Corvinus University, Hungary
Published by: Forest Policy and Economics 40 (2014) 31–39

This paper analyses the forestry industry trade of the New Member States (NMS-11) of the European Union (EU) on the enlarged EU-27 markets, focusing on three groups of wood products: raw wood, semi-finished and finished wood products in the 1999–2010 period. The best performing NMS-11 country in the forestry industry trade with the enlarged EU-27 is Cyprus with a trade surplus mostly based on finished or at least semi-finished wood products. The results suggest a convergence in the forestry industry trade specialization of the NMS-11 countries. A significant variation in the mobility of the forestry industry trade specialization is found, but with a deterioration in forestry industry trade specialisation patterns over time. The results suggest the crucial role that the wood-processing and furniture industries can play with finished wood products and their backward linkages to raw wood and semi-finished wood products for forestry industry competitiveness. Forestry industry management should focus on better quality and greater trade competitiveness in the vertical wood industry supply chains from lower to higher value-added and marketed wood products.

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Trade collapse, quality and food exports

Author(s): Daniele Curzi, Lucia Pacca, Alessandro Olper
Date of publication: 23/09/2013
Contributing institution(s): University of Milan, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods (DEMM)
Published by: Applied Economics Letters 20 (18): 1614–1617

This article revisits the so-called ‘Collapse in Quality’ hypothesis, according to which, during the 2008–2009 crisis, higher quality goods experienced a stronger export reduction compared to low-quality ones. Using disaggregated trade data from three European countries that traditionally export high-quality food products – France, Italy and Spain – we do not find any econometric evidence supporting this hypothesis. In contrast, we provide preliminary evidence for the concurrent hypothesis, namely that firms reduced their markup to preserve market share.

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Does Market Structure Influence Price Transmission in the Agro-food Sector? A Meta-analysis Perspective

Author(s): Zoltán Bakucs, Jan Fałkowski, Imre Fertő
Date of publication: 16/10/2013
Contributing institution(s): Institute of Economics, Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences (CERS-HAS), Hungary, University of Warsaw, Poland

This paper investigates the reasons for asymmetric price transmission in the agro-food chain, using meta-analysis of existing studies. Our focus is on the organizational and institutional characteristics of the agro-food supply chain. Our findings suggest that asymmetric price transmission in farmretail relationships is more likely to occur in sectors/countries with more fragmented farm structure, higher governmental support and more restrictive regulations on price controls in the retail sector. On the other hand, more restrictive regulations on entry barriers in the retail sector and the relative importance of the sector tend to promote symmetric farmretail price transmission. The latter is also more likely in the presence of a strong processing industry.

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