Dynamics in trade streams in international food supply networks: the case of fresh produce, meat, and cereals
In terms of trade, the identification of the most relevant agri-food trade streams serves as the foundation. This study focuses is on the size of trade streams regarding agri-food products in selected countries on a yearly basis and shows the potential for the introduction of e-commerce.
The focus in the paper is mainly on four agri-food supply chains: cereals, meat, fruit and vegetables, and olive oil. The procedure has been applied to six European traders in agricultural products (Germany, Austria, Italy, Slovenia, Greece and Spain), and three non-European countries (USA, Brazil and Turkey).
The main conclusions are as follows:
- trade structures in the selected countries are diverse, and there is a complex picture
- overlapping trade streams could be identified between some countries, such as Germany, Austria, Italy and Spain
- the export and import trade streams of raw materials are influenced by geographical distances and historical roots; geographic conditions also play an essential role in the import of processed products
- the trust in the seller is a crucial element in particular in the international trade where cultural differences govern
The paper particularly draws some notable findings about Turkey:
- Turkey has an important role in the production and foreign trade of fruit and vegetables
- indeed, fruits and vegetables are one of the most advantageous agricultural sub-sectors of Turkey in terms of foreign trade
- similarly, Turkey is one of the most important olive-oil producing countries in the world
- yet, its export of olive oil is generally limited to Italy and Spain in bulk packages mainly due to high import tax rates in European Countries