Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type





Agricultural Economics

First Advisor

Dr. Sayed H. Saghaian


As intra-industry trade increases in U.S. agricultural and food processing industries, the historical agricultural trade surplus is tightening. In efforts to maintain the trade surplus a focus has shifted towards the promotion of agricultural and processed food exports among small and medium sized firms. This study intends to identify and evaluate the potential for exports among small to medium sized agricultural and food processing firms in Kentucky through a collection of survey data. The objectives of this thesis are to identify the state’s product marketing opportunities and product specifications for international exports while identifying transaction requirements for potential exports. An analysis of the constraints and challenges faced by firms in the decision to export reveals rational behavior

Binary logistic regression analysis is used to identify the impact of firm characteristics, perceived marketing conditions and information constraints, and financial aspects on a firm’s decision to export. A second logit regression analyzes the impact on a non-exporting firm’s interest in international marketing opportunities. The lack of international market information, financial constraints, and risk are found to be significant factors in the decision to export and interest in foreign marketing.