Globalization is an important issue in the food industry, although most food is still locally produced and consumed. Many small and medium enterprises characterize the industry. Results of WTO negotiations intensify the international competition, in which the EU and USA are the largest players. Countries like Brazil, India and China are gaining market share. This raises the following research questions: 1. How competitive are the EU and US food industry and their sub-sectors? 2. Which role plays innovation and legislation in the competitiveness of the industry? 3. How will the competitiveness develop under future globalization and trade liberalization? The goal of this study is to fill these knowledge gaps.