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Between the 1970s and the 1990s, processed food exports switched from using more skilled labor per unit of output than imports to the opposite. Processed food trade also expanded during this period. More meat and poultry products in processed food trade could explain this switch in skill intensity. Growing meat trade paralleled an urban-to-rural shift in meat processing. Although this could have been a win-win situation for rural areas, many of the jobs related to expanded meat trade benefited commuter and migrant workers because late-1990s jobs slaughtering livestock and processing meat did not appeal to domestic rural workers.


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