IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/jfpoli/v37y2012i5p493-503.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Export behavior of Italian food firms: Does product quality matter?

Author

Listed:
  • Curzi, Daniele
  • Olper, Alessandro

Abstract

Using firm-level data we investigate the export behavior of Italian food firms, focusing on the link between total factor productivity (TFP), product quality, and export across heterogeneous destinations. We test the main predictions of an international trade model based on firm heterogeneity in product quality and non-homothetic preferences in consumption. In this setting, the firm’s export intensity should be increasing in the per-capita income of foreign destinations, and the effect should be largely driven by firms’ heterogeneity in product quality. Using different measures of revenue-TFP, and different proxies for product quality, we find strong support for the main model predictions. Moreover, consistent with the Alchian–Allen effect, we find a positive relationship between the quality of exported products and the distance of destination countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Curzi, Daniele & Olper, Alessandro, 2012. "Export behavior of Italian food firms: Does product quality matter?," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 493-503.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:37:y:2012:i:5:p:493-503
    DOI: 10.1016/j.foodpol.2012.05.004
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0306919212000553
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2007. "Firms in International Trade," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(3), pages 105-130, Summer.
    2. Henson, Spencer & Masakure, Oliver & Cranfield, John, 2011. "Do Fresh Produce Exporters in Sub-Saharan Africa Benefit from GlobalGAP Certification?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 375-386, March.
    3. Maria Priscila Ramos & Jean-Christophe Bureau & Luca Salvatici, 2010. "Trade composition effects of the EU tariff structure: beef imports from Mercosur," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 37(1), pages 1-26, March.
    4. Matthieu Crozet & Keith Head & Thierry Mayer, 2012. "Quality Sorting and Trade: Firm-level Evidence for French Wine," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(2), pages 609-644.
    5. Davide Castellani & Giorgia Giovannetti, 2010. "Productivity and the international firm: dissecting heterogeneity," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(1), pages 25-42.
    6. Eric A. Verhoogen, 2008. "Trade, Quality Upgrading, and Wage Inequality in the Mexican Manufacturing Sector," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(2), pages 489-530.
    7. Helpman, Elhanan, 2011. "Understanding Global Trade," Economics Books, Harvard University Press, number 9780674060784, December.
    8. Robert E. Lipsey, 1994. "Quality Change and other Influences on Measures of Export Prices of Manufactured Goods and the Terms of Trade between Primary Products and Manufacture," NBER Working Papers 4671, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Zvi Griliches & Jacques Mairesse, 1995. "Production Functions: The Search for Identification," NBER Working Papers 5067, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Amit Khandelwal, 2010. "The Long and Short (of) Quality Ladders," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(4), pages 1450-1476.
    11. Marc J. Melitz, 2003. "The Impact of Trade on Intra-Industry Reallocations and Aggregate Industry Productivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(6), pages 1695-1725, November.
    12. Roc Armenter & Miklós Koren, 2015. "Economies Of Scale And The Size Of Exporters," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 13(3), pages 482-511, June.
    13. David Hummels & Alexandre Skiba, 2004. "Shipping the Good Apples Out? An Empirical Confirmation of the Alchian-Allen Conjecture," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(6), pages 1384-1402, December.
    14. Jonathan Eaton & Samuel Kortum & Francis Kramarz, 2004. "Dissecting Trade: Firms, Industries, and Export Destinations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 150-154, May.
    15. Pablo Fajgelbaum & Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 2011. "Income Distribution, Product Quality, and International Trade," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 119(4), pages 721-765.
    16. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 1991. "Quality Ladders in the Theory of Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(1), pages 43-61.
    17. Michael M. Knetter, 1997. "The Segmentation of International Markets: Evidence from The Economist," NBER Working Papers 5878, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Richard Baldwin & James Harrigan, 2011. "Zeros, Quality, and Space: Trade Theory and Trade Evidence," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(2), pages 60-88, May.
    19. Marc J. Melitz & Gianmarco I. P. Ottaviano, 2008. "Market Size, Trade, and Productivity," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(1), pages 295-316.
    20. Klette, Tor Jakob & Griliches, Zvi, 1996. "The Inconsistency of Common Scale Estimators When Output Prices Are Unobserved and Endogenous," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(4), pages 343-361, July-Aug..
    21. Juan Carlos Hallak, 2010. "A Product-Quality View of the Linder Hypothesis," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(3), pages 453-466, August.
    22. Olley, G Steven & Pakes, Ariel, 1996. "The Dynamics of Productivity in the Telecommunications Equipment Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(6), pages 1263-1297, November.
    23. Jan De Loecker, 2011. "Product Differentiation, Multiproduct Firms, and Estimating the Impact of Trade Liberalization on Productivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(5), pages 1407-1451, September.
    24. Juan Carlos Hallak & Jagadeesh Sivadasan, 2009. "Firms' Exporting Behavior under Quality Constraints," Working Papers 09-13, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    25. Elhanan Helpman & Marc J. Melitz & Stephen R. Yeaple, 2004. "Export Versus FDI with Heterogeneous Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(1), pages 300-316, March.
    26. Aiginger, Karl, 1997. "The Use of Unit Values to Discriminate between Price and Quality Competition," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(5), pages 571-592, September.
    27. Maurice Kugler & Eric Verhoogen, 2012. "Prices, Plant Size, and Product Quality," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(1), pages 307-339.
    28. David Hummels & Peter J. Klenow, 2005. "The Variety and Quality of a Nation's Exports," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 704-723, June.
    29. Mary Amiti & Jozef Konings, 2007. "Trade Liberalization, Intermediate Inputs, and Productivity: Evidence from Indonesia," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(5), pages 1611-1638, December.
    30. A. Ninni & M. Raimondi & M. Zuppiroli, 2006. "The success of “Made in Italy”: an appraisal of quality-based competitiveness in food markets," Economics Department Working Papers 2006-EP10, Department of Economics, Parma University (Italy).
    31. Julie A. Caswell & Eliza M. Mojduszka, 1996. "Using Informational Labeling to Influence the Market for Quality in Food Products," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 78(5), pages 1248-1253.
    32. Bureau, Jean-Christophe & Marette, Stephan & Schiavina, Alessandra, 1998. "Non-tariff Trade Barriers and Consumers' Information: The Case of the EU-US Trade Dispute over Beef," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 25(4), pages 437-462.
    33. Andrew B. Bernard & J. Bradford Jensen & Peter K. Schott, 2009. "Importers, Exporters and Multinationals: A Portrait of Firms in the U.S. that Trade Goods," NBER Chapters,in: Producer Dynamics: New Evidence from Micro Data, pages 513-552 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    34. James Levinsohn & Amil Petrin, 2003. "Estimating Production Functions Using Inputs to Control for Unobservables," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(2), pages 317-341.
    35. Sanghamitra Das & Mark J. Roberts & James R. Tybout, 2007. "Market Entry Costs, Producer Heterogeneity, and Export Dynamics," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(3), pages 837-873, May.
    36. Zahoor Ul Haq & Karl Meilke, 2011. "Does the Linder effect hold for differentiated agri-food and beverage product trade?," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(27), pages 4095-4109.
    37. Bastos, Paulo & Silva, Joana, 2010. "The quality of a firm's exports: Where you export to matters," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 99-111, November.
    38. Costas Arkolakis, 2010. "Market Penetration Costs and the New Consumers Margin in International Trade," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 118(6), pages 1151-1199.
    39. Flam, Harry & Helpman, Elhanan, 1987. "Vertical Product Differentiation and North-South Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(5), pages 810-822, December.
    40. John Sutton, 2007. "Quality, Trade and the Moving Window: The Globalisation Process," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(524), pages 469-498, November.
    41. Steenkamp, Jan-Benedict E. M., 1990. "Conceptual model of the quality perception process," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 309-333, December.
    42. Gullstrand, Joakim, 2011. "Firm and destination-specific export costs: The case of the Swedish food sector," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 204-213, April.
    43. Juan Carlos Hallak & Peter K. Schott, 2011. "Estimating Cross-Country Differences in Product Quality," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(1), pages 417-474.
    44. Emmanuelle Chevassus-Lozza & Karine Latouche, 2012. "Firms, markets and trade costs: access of French exporters to European agri-food markets," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 39(2), pages 257-288, April.
    45. Spencer Henson & Steven Jaffee, 2008. "Understanding Developing Country Strategic Responses to the Enhancement of Food Safety Standards," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 31(4), pages 548-568, April.
    46. Amil Petrin & Brian P. Poi & James Levinsohn, 2004. "Production function estimation in Stata using inputs to control for unobservables," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 4(2), pages 113-123, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Daniele Curzi & Lucia Pacca & Alessandro Olper, 2013. "Estimating Food Quality from Trade Data: An Empirical Assessment," LICOS Discussion Papers 33913, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    2. Giovannetti, Giorgia & Marvasi, Enrico, 2016. "Food exporters in global value chains: Evidence from Italy," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 110-125.
    3. Athanasios Bizmpiroulas & Konstantinos Rotsios & Georgios Kartsiotis, 2014. "Determinant of Export Success Factors: The Perception of Greek Food and Drink Export Companies," International Journal of Economics & Business Administration (IJEBA), International Journal of Economics & Business Administration (IJEBA), vol. 0(2), pages 77-98.
    4. Curzi, Daniele & Raimondi, Valentina & Olper, Alessandro, 2013. "Quality Upgrading, Competition and Trade Policy: Evidence from the Agri-Food Sector," Proceedings Issues, 2013: Productivity and Its Impacts on Global Trade, June 2-4, 2013. Seville, Spain 152387, International Agricultural Trade Research Consortium.
    5. Duvaleix-Tréguer, Sabine & Emlinger, Charlotte & Gaigné, Carl & Latouche, Karine, 2015. "Quality and Export Performance Evidence from Cheese Industry," 145th Seminar, April 14-15, 2015, Parma, Italy 200237, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    6. repec:bla:jageco:v:68:y:2017:i:1:p:280-300 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Disdier, Anne-Célia & Gaigné, Carl & Herghelegiu, Cristina, 2016. "Firm Exports and Quality Standards: Evidence from French Food Industry," 149th Seminar, October 27-28, 2016, Rennes, France 244783, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    8. Olper, Alessandro & Pacca, Lucia & Curzi, Daniele, 2014. "Trade, import competition and productivity growth in the food industry," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(P1), pages 71-83.
    9. Olper, Alessandro & Curzi, Daniele & Raimondi, Valentina, 2015. "Import Penetration, Intermediate Inputs and Firms’ Productivity in the EU Food Industry," 2015 Fourth Congress, June 11-12, 2015, Ancona, Italy 207844, Italian Association of Agricultural and Applied Economics (AIEAA).
    10. Olper, Alessandro & Curzi, Daniele & Frisio, Dario Gianfranco & Raimondi, Valentina, 2012. "Home Bias in Consumption: A Comparison between Wine and Beer," Journal of International Agricultural Trade and Development, Journal of International Agricultural Trade and Development, vol. 61(4).
    11. Ferto, Imre & Bojnec, Stefan, 2015. "Quality upgrading in the European-Union agri-food exports," 89th Annual Conference, April 13-15, 2015, Warwick University, Coventry, UK 204225, Agricultural Economics Society.
    12. Curzi, Daniele & Pacca, Lucia, 2015. "Price, quality and trade costs in the food sector," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 147-158.
    13. repec:bla:jageco:v:68:y:2017:i:1:p:269-279 is not listed on IDEAS

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:37:y:2012:i:5:p:493-503. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/foodpol .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.