Integration of logistics network in local food supply chains

Abstract: The demand for locally produced food is increasing as global food supply system has considerably affected the confidence of consumers by increasing tonne-kilometres, food safety risk, environmental impact, and disconnecting local food producers and consumers. However, local food suppliers are not in the position to compete with large scale food supply systems due to high logistics costs. The overall objective of this study was to improve the logistics management of local food supply chains. In this thesis, food traceability issues and the local food supply chains were studied based on literature reviews and five case studies in Sweden. The thesis comprises of six papers. Paper I considers food traceability issues. Paper II deals with comparison analysis of small scale abattoir and large scale abattoir in terms of animal supply and meat distribution. Paper III focuses on box-scheme based organic food delivery system, while Paper IV deals with coordination and regional integration in local food delivery system. Papers V and VI consider the case of clustering producers, determining collection centres, and forming coordination and integration within the network and further integration into large scale food delivery systems. The best locations of collection and distribution centres were determined using Centre-of-Gravity and Load-Distance techniques and Geographic Information Systems tools. Optimising food transport routes were done with Route LogiX and ArcGIS network analyst tools. Effective food traceability system is an important tool to be considered as integral part of food logistics system as it facilitates the integrated management of food supply chain as a whole. Compared with large scale abattoirs, the local small scale abattoir could reduce travel distance, time, and emission and could improve animal welfare, meat quality and safety, and customer satisfaction. The integration of logistics managements along with clustering, coordination, and optimisation techniques, could reduce the transport distance, time, trips, and emission, and improve the vehicle capacity utilisation in the local food supply chains. As a consequence of reduced transport distance, number of vehicles and improved vehicle capacity utilisation, negative environmental impacts of local food supply systems could be reduced. The study revealed that the integrated logistics network has implications for improving food traceability, logistics efficiency, food quality and safety, the potential marketing channels, economic benefits, and competitiveness of suppliers; and for attenuating negative environmental impact and promoting sustainable local food systems.

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