Sustainable Food and Fibre Supply Chains: Case studies from south-west Western Australia

  • 99 pages

  • Published: 23 Oct 2008

  • Author(s): Ecker, Saan

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The study assessed the range of sustainability-related values held by farmers, manufacturers, distributors, retailers and consumers (the value chain actors) throughout the supply chain, within a selection of food and fibre supply chains arising from farms located in the South West of Western Australia. Information was gathered about how sustainability values held by supply chain actors influence (or fail to influence) development and operation of integrated value chain sustainability approaches. This can potentially inform the development of value chains that better acknowledge and reward sustainability efforts, particularly at the farm scale.

Drivers of and impediments to integrated value chain sustainability approaches were determined. These were related to the role of certification or environmental assurance systems, relationships between supply chain actors, and strategies related to economic sustainability and improving understanding and awareness of sustainability issues.

The study considers production /consumption systems rather than farmers as the primary object of study into agricultural sustainability. The analysis involved assessment of environmental and social issues associated with the cycle of production from growing to consumption.

This report is targeted at all segments of agricultural value chains and related organisations, including governments and Natural Resource Management Bodies, wanting information on how environmental and social sustainability values can be better incorporated into food and fibre production and consumption in Australia.