Exploration into Food Waste Occurring in Bovine Dairy, Leafy Green and Apple Supply Chains

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Hayhoe, Mychal-Ann

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University of Guelph


Food waste is an issue of significant importance and rising concern in society. While research indicates that the majority of food waste is occurring in consumers’ homes, there is also considerable waste generated in food supply chains. Waste reduction in food supply chains represents a potentially rewarding challenge for researchers as it can reduce the environmental impact of the food system, but also because companies continually seek out money saving opportunities. In this dissertation, food waste and management literature are examined. The theory of the offering, is used to describe moving from a supply chain to a value chain. It is suggested that this will force increased valuation of food items which will help reduce waste. The concept of the bullwhip effect is also presented and the idea that it may be contributing to waste generation is introduced. Three case studies examining bovine dairy, leafy greens, and apple supply chains are used to describe where, how, and why food waste is occurring. This exploratory work of case studies produces twenty testable hypotheses to direct future research. These hypotheses are mapped onto a framework indicating where waste can be found in food supply chains suggesting what areas of the supply chain is best suited for additional research.



food waste, supply chain, value chain, bullwhip effect, food supply, service dominant logic, the offering, dairy supply chain, apple supply chain, leafy green supply chain, bullwhip effect echo