Short food supply chains are characterized by few intermediaries and shorter physical distances between producers and consumers. These supply chains are good for increasing profits of farmers and other producers, revitalize rural economies, and give consumers access to fresh, fairly-priced foods. Short food supply chains are garnishing more attention as consumers are concerned about the spread of foodborne diseases as well as issues such as the horse meat being identified in packaged foods in Europe. In this article, we have talked about some of the greatest benefits that the use of short food industry supply chains offers:
#1. Improved negotiating positions for farmers
These short food industry supply chains offer farmers greater power during negotiations, especially during those with retailers. Using short food industry supply chains that do not consist of multiple processors, traders, and wholesalers give farmers and small producers more direct access to the market.
#2. Increased communication between producer and consumer
Short supply chains can lead to job creation, especially in rural areas, which also helps to increase the farmer or producer’s reputation and the trust that consumers place in them. Operating locally allows producers and consumers to have more direct communication and interaction, which also helps to build loyalty and trust.
#3. Reduced transportation costs
Short supply chains typically serve a local area, reducing the energy costs, transportation costs, and CO2 emissions used to transport goods in longer supply chains. Because of this, these supply chains have a greater potential to be made sustainable and to remain sustainable over the long term.
#4. Increased transparency
It’s easier to make short food industry supply chains with few or no intermediaries transparent than it is longer and more complex ones. Producers are also able to offer more detailed information about their business and practices, helping to build their reputation, increase customer retention, and build loyalty. It also makes it easier to make procurement decisions.
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#5. Reduced risk
Short food industry supply chains reduce the risk of damage, contamination, or theft of the products during transportation, packaging, or production. Minimizing the number of players involved in the supply chain helps to make it safer and more secure, which helps to protect farmers and producers as well as their end-users.
#6. Increased quality
Doing business and transporting goods locally increases their overall quality by reducing the need for freezing and use of preservatives, allowing customers access to a fresh food supply. Additionally, short food industry supply chains reduce food waste and disposal costs for farmers and producers.
#7. Greater profits
Short food industry supply chains offer farmers with greater profits while keeping the end-price more or less the same for consumers. By eliminating middlemen, reducing the length of the food industry supply chains, and operating on a more independent basis, farmers and small producers are able to keep more of the resulting profits for themselves rather than share them amongst other suppliers.
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