Semester of Graduation

Summer 2022


Master of Science (MS)


Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness

Document Type



The United States is known for being one of the world’s largest rice exporters. Rice from the United States is exported to more than 130 nations and territories on all continents. The world rice market accounts for around 50 percent of the U.S. rice yearly sales volume. Even though the U.S. produces less than 2 percent of global rice, exports are significant to its rice industry. Given the various factors that determine trade (e.g., production, distance, income, and trade agreements), theory suggests that the impact of factors on the U.S. agricultural trade will vary according to commodity and country. There is a lack of information as to the factors that impact the various types of rice exported from the United States. To fill this void, the augmented gravity model is used to determine the main factors that affect U.S. rice exports. The USDA Global Agricultural Trade System database is the primary data source for this analysis. Estimation of this augmented gravity model will generate information showing the impact of the factors affecting long-grain husked, long-grain milled, and short/medium milled rice exports during the 2002-2019 period across 10-digit Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HS-10) codes, as well as across 50 partner countries. Ordinary Least Squares (OLS), Generalized Least Squares (GLS), and Poisson Pseudo-Maximum Likelihood (PPML) analytical approaches were used to estimate the model. The results show that the PPML approach performs better overall for the specification of the gravity equation employed. The study finds that the factors influencing trade would vary according to each commodity. However, the importers’ production, income, population, and the Free Trade Agreements in force with the United States are found to be particularly important as these factors have a significant impact on exports across all rice commodity models.

Committee Chair

Kennedy, P. Lynn



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