Standards Certifications and Exports Performance: Evidence from the Processed Food Industry in Colombia

Standards Certifications and Exports Performance: Evidence from the Processed Food Industry in Colombia

Cristina Robledo-Ardila (Universidad EAFIT, Colombia), Sara Aguilar-Barrientos (Universidad EAFIT, Colombia), Kelly Gonzalez-Tapias (Universidad EAFIT, Colombia), Ana María Gomez-Trujillo (Universidad EAFIT, Colombia) and Camila Uribe-Villa (Universidad EAFIT, Colombia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-0276-0.ch019
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The integration of the world economy and the internationalization of companies have resulted in consumers' demand for high quality goods. Standards have emerged as a way of reducing the information asymmetries that consumers face when purchasing a product, and have gained importance in the processed food industry as they allow them to assess the quality of goods and may influence the export performance of certified firms (An & Maskus, 2009). Certifications may act as promoters of international trade, but they can also constitute a barrier when the costs associated with the certification process exceed the potential benefits (Jarasueiya et al., 2006). The present study aims to compare the export performance of certified vs. non-certified firms in the Colombian processed food industry. A Mann-Whitney Test was used to analyze the difference of exports value for the selected companies, and then, non-structured interviews to the quality managers of these companies were conducted to gain greater understanding about the impact of standards certifications on their export performance.
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Literature Review

Globalization has led to multiple changes in business practices. Through the last few decades competitiveness has augmented, resulting in an increased requirement for companies to adapt to the conditions of global markets (Masakure, Henson, & Cranfield, 2008). Supply chains have been modified, international trade has grown, and aspects such as quality and environmental issues have gained importance in international scenarios (Vieira & Traill, 2007).

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