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Jess: Getting feedback on a story. As a writer, you know not everyone is going to love your characters or the story you are telling, but it is amazing when you hear from readers. So the best part for me is hearing from the readers! C: I was just telling a friend this. But in the end, when that one reader emails you and tells you how much they loved the story, it makes it all worthwhile. The tears, the headache, the hours spent behind the computer. Alright, so back to this story. I love stories where strong men can be brought to their knees by equally strong women. Okay, now for the favorite part.

Give me your top three favorite things. Jess: 1. The Ohio State Buckeyes 2. The sound of the waves crashing to the shore 3. My children laughing D. Keep scrolling down to read an excerpt below.

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Sleeping with anyone? Her face was incapable of hiding her shock at his questions. Her green eyes were wide. Her lips parted. He stood directly in front of her, cornering her behind her desk. He looked down into her green eyes. They were gorgeous… she was gorgeous. And he had every intention of claiming her.

Are you seeing anyone? Nervousness flittered across her face, but her breath came out in short pants as if his close proximity affected her. He watched as her chest rose and fell with each breath. God, he wanted to feel her body against his.

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He just knew she would feel perfect against him… in his arms. Despite her body giving her attraction away, she held firm. He liked that. I need the answers nonetheless. Her gaze scanned his face as if looking for the answer to her question. His hand reached out and caressed her cheek as if to soothe the harshness of his words.

His fingers tucked a few strands of her hair behind her ear. His gaze dropped to her bared neck. He had to fight the urge to nuzzle the spot just below her ear. That was almost his undoing. She released her bottom lip and sucked in a breath when he asked that question. Her gaze fell from his eyes to his lips and then to her hands. He placed his fingers under her chin and tilted her head up to meet his gaze again.

He wanted to see her eyes when she answered him. There was heat in her gaze, and that thrilled him. Her voice was hard, but he heard the desire in it and that snapped his restraint. His hand weaved into her hair until his palm gripped the back of her head, pulling her into him. His mouth slammed down on hers. Her full lips were soft and pliable, and his tongue flicked out over her lips to taste her.

She tasted so sweet…like candy. Maylee link.

First Name. Last Name. Email Format html text. Follow this blog. Powered by Create your own unique website with customizable templates. In , Porter 2 hypothesised in his text "The Competitive Advantage of Nations", why some nations were more competitive than others. As well as being able to successfully manoeuvre through the environment he identified that the foundation of success lay in the "diamond" of "home" advantage. To successfully launch an international challenge he identified four "home" prerequisites - the maximum use of endowed resources natural and human the forming of domestic networks to fully exploit these resources, domestic demand which may involve the invitation to world class players to help develop these resources in country and finally, an industry and environmental structure the latter provided by Government in order that these forces can thrive.

Unfortunately, in many developing nations, the first stage only has been reached and even then much of the added value is exported. Thankfully this is not the case in other LDC's. We can examine this further by looking at the application of the above theory in the food industry. Firstly it must be competitive with other agricultural systems or any other system for that matter say wildlife management in attracting resources, and secondly it must be absolutely competitive against similar commodity systems or industries in other countries.

The commodity system may have to compete against those industries in international markets or be threatened by them in its domestic markets. Porter would refer to this as "competitive advantage" or "international competitiveness". Whilst Porter concentrates on two factors in the control of manufacturing industries i.

However, complementary supply may not be a competitive strategy per-se, in the long term, because a supplier must still look at itself as a low cost or product differentiated supplier. As in industrial products, many factors go into making up the comparative or competitive advantage of a supplier. Similarly in food systems, many technological, market or natural resource endowment factors go towards making up competitive advantage. Many of these factors have actually been discussed, and these are summarised in table 6. These factors are primarily related to the size and patterns of food demand shaped by incomes, tastes, technological developments etc.

Table 6. In Porter's 3 analysis industry competitors can be "threatened" by new or potential entrants and substitutes. In food marketing systems, barriers to new entrants can exist, as well as barriers to international competitiveness. These barriers can be related to technical characteristics of commodities, perishability, bulkiness; production characteristics - small scale producers incurring higher transport costs; production support systems; dissemination of information to producers; processing and distribution functions - economies of scale, and laws; rules and standards - hygiene requirements, sizing, grading, phytosanitary systems.

Conversely these factors can also be "standardised" by Government or other market intermediaries and players to make the "threat" of new entrants even more real. These include standard technological measures like containerisation, packaging, waxcoating, use of accredited pesticides, mechanical handling; standard laws, rules and regulations -phytosanitary requirements, size, standards, grades and rules defining property rights; permissable forms of cooperation and competition; unusual brand marks or reputations; spot or contact trading; standard channels of distribution and so on.

All these can help facilitate the entry of a newcomer and make the incumbent be particularly on guard and responsive. It is an example of how, through low cost of production and product differentiation it has been able to maintain its international competitiveness. CASE 6. It had always exported salted meet and later chilled beef, but with the establishment of "barriers" internationally the Commonwealth preference System, and other environmental factors like World War II, Argentina's international beef market contracted and so it standardised the domestic market.

Argentina's beef consumption per capita is almost four times that of Western Europe kgs compared to kgs Despite its domestic orientation recently. Argentina is stilt the world's third largest beef producer and fourth in exporting terms behind Australia, Germany and the US. This success was not necessarily built on favourable trading conditions but its ability to maintain international competitiveness through rampant inflation, currency overevaluation, heavy taxation, potential uncertainty and increased competition from substitute products internationally and from the Argentine cereals subsector which was clamouring for more resources, Its success was sustained by a low cost production of quality beef climate and extensive grasslands ; b well developed, flexible and transparent livestock marketing system; c Innovations in beef distribution domestically butcher chain stores, vacuum packing ; d development of new: international market outlets.

Mid East ; and, e debt rescheduling by banks for livestock and trading enterprises. With recent measures to make the industry viable again, including capacity rationalisation, Argentina beef is now back in profit and. But this is not limited to LDC's alone.

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Israel found itself unable to compete internationally with its citrus products, but found a new way to remain competitive internationally. Hectarage rose from 14 to over 40 hectares. With the well respected "Jaffa" label and the Citrus Marketing Board as the Only exporter in Porter's term's giving huge, "supplier power" Israel oranges and grapefruit dominated many markets. However, by the late 's stiff competition from Spain, Morocco and Cyprus and changing consumer tastes led to a levelling off of demand, and the once powerful, Citrus Marketing Board found it had to shift its orientation from powerful, bargaining seller to a marketer" naturing new demand patterns.

Whilst it succeeded in some of its promotion and utilisation campaigns, it increasingly found Itself with excess supply and a product which was less in demand. Consumer tastes had shifted to "easy peeling" oranges and tangerines and sweeter red grapefruit, away from Israeli Shamuti Jaffa orange and white grapefruit.

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The once powerful Citrus Marketing Board's monopoly was rescinded in Several factors led to Israel's decline. These included:- a rapid cost inflation in the mid 's; b the strength of the USD vis a vis European currencies. The CMB's unit of accounting was USD; c a significant rise in international shipping costs in the early 's; d financial crisis within Israel's agricultural settlements; e improper export product mix; f conflict of interest in the subsector giving weakened incentives for product innovations and quality; g inability of the Citrus Marketing Board CMB to reposition itself to maintain competitiveness; and, h Quality and supply of competitors, especially in demanded products for example Spain.

The Israeli citrus industry experienced all the problems envisaged by Porter In maintaining industry competitiveness. Bargaining power by the CMD shifted from supplier to the buyer.

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Competitors had a better product and lower costs and a product that was now demanded. These directly substituted for the Israeli product. However, Israel responded. In a few cooperatives and processors began processing fruit, despite the unsuitably of the product in many cases, and were able to absorb one million tons of fresh fruit product.

Export of processed citrus products concentrates, bases, essential oils etc first exceeded its value of fresh fruit in and are now double the export of fresh fruits. Technological advances and the ability to tailor make to niches has ensured international competitiveness. However, the greatest potential, looks like in the supply of root stock to other producers and processors, although Florida and Brazil are doing the same.

Competition analysis In order to know how best to compete, as well as the analysis given above, one needs to know the way competitors measure themselves, their strategy to date, their major strengths and weaknesses and likely future strategy. In the first of these - knowing the way competitors see themselves - much can be learned from public accounts, interviews and the trade press. Other ways are to have competitive personnel, take part in trade fairs, purchase the competitor's product and take it apart, or indulge in "espionage".

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In identifying the competitor's strategy to date, it is not enough to believe what they say but to reconstruct their strategy. Evaluating resources is difficult. It is essential to look at their production, marketing, financial and management resources. On the basis of these first three, it is possible to guess the future. Not all competitors are necessarily bad. Good competitors can absorb demand fluctuations, expand the market, increase motivation, and act responsively to the industry.

There is, for example, room for all developing countries to take a share in most world markets in commodities, without one country wishing to be too aggressive. Competitive strategy Value chain analysis espouses three roles for marketing in a global competitive strategy. The first relates to the configuration of marketing. It may be advantageous to concentrate some marketing activities in one or a few countries.

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A second role relates to the coordination of activities across countries to gain leverage say, of know how. A third critical role of marketing is its role in tapping opportunities for upstream advantage in the value chain. More will be said about value chain analysis in later chapters. Generic approaches According to Porter 1 there are three generic approaches to outperforming others in an industry - overall cost leadership, differentiation and focus see figure 6.

This is the case of television sets and many fruit products. If there is a large perceived difference created, then the firm has more price leeway.


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Focus strategies concentrate on serving a particular segment better than anyone else. A good example of this is the Dutch flower auction or Gerber baby foods. The life cycle As indicated in chapter one, successful global strategists have also to be cognisant of the international life cycle. Successful strategies start with a firm base in one region or country, then expand as opportunities arise.

These opportunities have to be explored alongside careful analysis of the life cycle stage in one or another country. Failure to do so may mean that the opportunity has passed, whereas the firm may be under the impression it is still there. Strategies for success Success can be achieved in industries by identifying growth segments within an overall market, enhancing quality and stressing operating efficiencies.

In fragmented industries success can be achieved by the creation of economies of scale. In the poultry and beef cattle industry, for example, this means feed lots and intensive rearing. Another way of overcoming fragmentation is by "positioning" which must be consistent. The three types of positioning strategy are market leader, market challenger or market follower. In market leadership the firm must work at maintaining its position, having got there through, say, cost advantage or innovation, by being very responsive to market needs.

We shall see this later in the case of Thailand's tuna industry.