Applied Mathematicsematics

Business Logic for Sustainability: An Analysis of the Food - download pdf or read online

By Aileen Ionescu-Somers, Ulrich Steger

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In developed countries, women have moved to working more outside the home, and there is also a significant and ongoing rise in single parent families. The average Western consumer today expects to spend no more than 30 minutes in preparing, eating and cleaning up after a meal and food products are increasingly more complex and highly processed (frozen or pre-prepared) to cater for this demand. Studies even show that cooking in the USA is trending to become more of a hobby than a practical everyday requirement and family meals have often become the domain of the more affluent members of society, having been replaced by a snacking culture – or ‘grazing’ as it is often now termed, with large numbers of consumers unused to preparing meals from basic ingredients.

5 Buyer power In less mature markets, food is either produced for subsistence or is sold, unprocessed or requiring minimal processing, direct to the consumer. However, in mature markets, the food retail sector and the food service sector are the final links in the supply chain, and it is through these sectors that the food manufacturer interfaces with the end consumer. Hence, the role of these two sectors in influencing manufacturing activities, including the sustainable development agenda in companies, is primordial.

Also, if managers are not convinced of the value of a proposition, then it is unlikely that they will act effectively upon it. We propose looking specifically at four areas and therefore formulate four sub-questions: Research question 1a: What is the competitive framework within which the industry is operating and how does this influence the sustainability agenda? Research question 1b: What are the key social and environmental issues of economic relevance to the industry and why are they relevant?

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