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Citation Information

Type Working Paper
Title FAO commodity and trade policy research working paper no. 42
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2013
URL http://www.fao.org/3/a-ar709e.pdf
To illuminate the role of agro-export industry in inclusive growth, this case study on Philippine mango
focuses on the role of market structure in the distribution of export benefits. It is based on review of
industry trends and related studies, open-ended interviews of key informants, and structured interviews
of respondents situated along the value chain.
The distribution of trade benefits is hypothesized to depend on both vertical and horizontal market
structure. The former implies that a contracting relationship or vertical integration is a mechanism
to elevate product quality to export grade. The latter implies that economies of scale are a factor in
mango exporting, at the marketing and processing stages. It is noteworthy that there are no discernible
economies of scale at the primary level, which accounts for the prevalence of smallholder growing at
the production stage.
Quantitative analysis offers preliminary confirmation that vertical linkages are an important factor in
raising mango quality to export grade. Moreover, enterprise size is an important factor in producing or
procuring export grade mango. This in turn accounts for the prominence of horizontal market structure
in the export sector.
However, the importance of scale economies in the industry should not be overstated. Investment
requirements do rule out small-scale operations, but are perfectly within reach of medium-size firms.
Considerably more entry is possible with adequate and stable supply of quality raw material at reasonable
cost. In fact entry has been recorded in both fresh and processed exports, though exits are also frequent;
the largest firms, especially among processors, tend to be the longest-lived.
To facilitate entry, encourage diversity, and widen distribution of benefits from exporting, concerned
stakeholders must focus on relieving the key constraint, which is availability of stable and affordable
supply of fresh mango of export grade for either fresh or processed sectors. This requires regulatory
reforms, reliable database of mango growers, investments in R&D, and improvements in the extension
system to offer technical assistance and technology transfer.

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