IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Sources of competitive advantages and business performance within the European meat processing industry


  • Strandskov, Jesper

    () (Department of International Business)


1. The aim of the paper is to investigate the relative importance of three sets of sources of competitive advantages on business performance in a specific industry context, ie the European meat processing industry. The three sets of competitive sources are Firm Specific Advantages (FSAs), Localizational Specific Advantages (LSAs) and Relationship Specific Advantages (RSAs). Based on a literature study, each set of competitive advantages is briefly described in terms of their theoretical antecedents. Seven hypotheses are formulated regarding the direct as well as the indirect relationships between the FSAs, LSAs and RSAs and business performance. Also, the direction of causality between the various sets of explanatory variables is considered. The hypotheses are combined in a structural modelling of firm competition. 2. Data and measurements are derived from a survey in the European meat processing industry in which 133 meat processors from 10 EU countries agreed to participate. A total of 17 variables of sources of advantage were developed and analysed (nine FSAs, four LSAs and four RSAs). Examples of the FSA measures are level of process technology; product development efforts; new product introductions and marketing mix efforts. The LSAs include variables related to national endowment of resources and industry-related factors such as for example the degree of industry concentration. The RSA measurements include relationships with retailers; relationships to suppliers; access to raw materials and distribution costs. Business performance was measured by applying the following indicators: return of investments, sales growth and market share. 3. The data set was subjected to conformative factor analysis and structural equation modelling using LISREL8. Based on an evaluation of the reliability values and t-values of each item, only seven of the measurements of competitive advantages were further analysed. A three-factor model was found to fit the data best, viz. that firm, localisational and relationship-specific advantages together should be treated as independent constructs. Six structural equation models were estimated of which one model, in particular, seems to fit the data best. 4. The meat processing industry results of the analysis show that the FSAs and the RSAs are the most important explanatory variables as regards business performances, however, with strong interaction effects between the two sets of variables. LSAs such as industry structure and national endowment of resources do not seem to influence the business performance of the meat processors. Moreover, the paper shows that those meat processing firms developing strong ties with the retailing sector will have their business performance increased as well as their firm-specific advantages (such as product development, process development etc.) being improved by strong retail relationships. Finally, the paper supports the view that investments in process and/or product innovation will pay off in the meat processing industry

Suggested Citation

  • Strandskov, Jesper, 1999. "Sources of competitive advantages and business performance within the European meat processing industry," MAPP Working Papers 63, University of Aarhus, Aarhus School of Business, The MAPP Centre.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhb:aarmap:0063

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ingemar Dierickx & Karel Cool, 1989. "Asset Stock Accumulation and Sustainability of Competitive Advantage," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 35(12), pages 1504-1511, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


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

    Cited by:

    1. Jan Schiefer & Monika Hartmann, 2008. "Determinants of competitive advantage for German food processors," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(3), pages 306-319.

    More about this item


    Competitive power; Meat industry; Europe;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    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:hhb:aarmap:0063. 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: (Helle Vinbaek Stenholt). General contact details of provider: .

    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.