Oilseeds and oilseed products are vital commodities in international trade, and production has been rapidly expanded in recent years under the yield growth and demand characteristics linked to more income-elastic products. Of the global production for major oilseeds, which reached 395.2 million metric tons in 2009, three major producers – the United States, Brazil and China – account for almost 50 percent. This paper develops a broad trade framework to estimate the impacts of transportation costs on international oilseeds trade using gravity models. We describe export and import markets of oilseeds and derived vegetable oils. A Baier and Berstrand gravity model method (2009), using a Taylor-series expansion, reveals a theoretical relationship between incomes, trade flows and trading costs through a reduced-form gravity specification. Distance between two countries and border trade barriers have significant and substantive impacts on the trade value of oilseeds and oilseeds oils.


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