Within a trading system which is increasingly determined by food quality standards the concern exists that small producers possibilities for participation on international trade diminish. However, most concerns base on theoretical considerations and little empirical evidence exists. This paper empirically analyzes the compliance decision of Moroccan tomato producers with the EUREPGAP standard based on results of 63 interviews. By comparing the decision process of certified and non certified producers the most important drivers for certification are identified. Theoretically the analysis bases on the decision model of Rogers (2003) which was developed to analyze the decision process to adopt technical innovations. Results of the survey open up interesting opportunities for interpretation. 1) No results are found that small producers were particularly disadvantaged in the compliance process. 2) Less-organized or less integrated farmers tend to be disfavored since especially forward integration in form of being a member in a cooperative changes the cost of compliance. 3) Forward integration tens to be of particular importance not only because of decreasing cost of compliance but as well because of a direct access to information on the buyers requirements. The survey explores that using the term small as a synonym for less organized, less educated and technically less advanced production tends to be false when looking at small producers in the export value chain. These producers are small in relative terms and often larger in size as well as in capital and human capital than small producers producing for the domestic market.


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