The role of traceability in end-to-end circular agri-food supply chains
Industrial Marketing Management
The transition to a circular supply chain is a prerequisite for the agri-food sector to address growing consumer pressure for sustainability while meeting the required standards of quality and safety. Although traceability systems contribute notably to agri-food sustainability, their function as a core mechanism for monitoring and managing the transition from linear to circular supply chains has been neglected. Our objective in this study is to explore the role of traceability in the transition to sustainability-driven circular agri-food supply chains. We employ an end-to-end supply chain investigation, using a consumer-focused survey and a Delphi study of supply chain stakeholders from farm to shelf. Our results suggest that traceability plays a pivotal role in this process. The acceptance of traceability systems begins with the consumer and moves upstream, from fork to farm, acting as a catalyst through stakeholders' adoption towards a circular economy. A change at the consumer level drives changes in the supply chain and eventually at the company level. This study is the first to introduce a traceability angle to the current literature on sustainable agri-food supply chains and its transition to the circular economy.
Open Access Status
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Hellenic Foundation for Research and Innovation