Sustainability Assessment Framework for Food Supply Chain Logistics: Empirical Findings from Dutch Food Industry

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van der Vorst, Jack G.A.J. ; Peeters, Lotte ; Bloemhof, Jacqueline M. (2013)
  • Publisher: CentMa
  • Journal: International Journal on Food System Dynamics (issn: 1869-6945)
  • Subject: Nutrition. Foods and food supply | logistics service providers | Food logistics | TX341-641 | food industry | Food logistics, sustainability, food industry, logistics service providers, Agribusiness, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Industrial Organization, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods, | sustainability

Food companies are increasingly challenged to balance business performance and economic gains with environmental and social performance. Therefore, in 2012, we started a collaborative project on this topic named SCALE (Step Change in Agri-food Logistics Ecosystems). SCALE aims to improve the sustainability of food and drink supply chain logistics in the context of rising food demands, increasing energy prices and the need to reduce environmentally damaging emissions. More in particular, SCALE aims to deliver a number of tools and frameworks valuable for the agri-food sector to secure a step change in operational practices, which will improve the efficiency and sustainability of supply chain logistics. In the paper we present the first results of this project. Aim of this paper is (1) to present a sustainability research framework for food supply chains logistics including drivers, strategies, performance indicators, metrics and improvement opportunities to measure and potentially enhance sustainability performances; and (2) to analyse and diagnose the current status of Dutch food & drinks companies and logistics service providers using this framework. Results are found via a literature review, web-based research and structured interviews with Dutch food and logistics service industry.
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