In recent years, sustainability concerns gained traction in the scientific literature on cleaner production, as well as in industry and application. In this regard, the circular economy (CE) is intended to contribute to the current ecological transition, providing economic advantages and preserving global society for future generations. CE initiatives have been implemented in recent decades to offset the harmful environmental consequences of supply chain operations. Notably, CE strategies can be applied at different supply chain levels, in product design, manufacturing, transportation, consumption, and disposal. Using the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology, the present research examines a case study from the Italian egg industry, highlighting the environmental benefits and social implications of initiatives supporting CE (i.e. the use of recyclable and biodegradable packaging and the adoption of a short supply chain). The implementation of those CE strategies shows a 22% reduction in Kg CO2-eq emissions, proposing that circular concepts should be incorporated into sustainable supply chain management. Notably, this paper analyses the environmental implications of the intermediate phases of the egg industry supply chain. Both primary and secondary data have been collected. We collected primary data via direct interviews with companies’ managers throughout all the study phases. As a result, despite various external issues affecting the company decisions, the paper shows that incorporating CE strategies may deliver demonstrable environmental benefits for the companies. In addition, other strategies that should be adopted in the long term have also been outlined. Finally, the implications that sustainable behaviours of the companies can entail have been examined.

Coming out the egg: Assessing the benefits of circular economy strategies in agri-food industry

Cerchione R.;Passaro R.
2023-01-01

Abstract

In recent years, sustainability concerns gained traction in the scientific literature on cleaner production, as well as in industry and application. In this regard, the circular economy (CE) is intended to contribute to the current ecological transition, providing economic advantages and preserving global society for future generations. CE initiatives have been implemented in recent decades to offset the harmful environmental consequences of supply chain operations. Notably, CE strategies can be applied at different supply chain levels, in product design, manufacturing, transportation, consumption, and disposal. Using the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology, the present research examines a case study from the Italian egg industry, highlighting the environmental benefits and social implications of initiatives supporting CE (i.e. the use of recyclable and biodegradable packaging and the adoption of a short supply chain). The implementation of those CE strategies shows a 22% reduction in Kg CO2-eq emissions, proposing that circular concepts should be incorporated into sustainable supply chain management. Notably, this paper analyses the environmental implications of the intermediate phases of the egg industry supply chain. Both primary and secondary data have been collected. We collected primary data via direct interviews with companies’ managers throughout all the study phases. As a result, despite various external issues affecting the company decisions, the paper shows that incorporating CE strategies may deliver demonstrable environmental benefits for the companies. In addition, other strategies that should be adopted in the long term have also been outlined. Finally, the implications that sustainable behaviours of the companies can entail have been examined.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11367/112757
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