Supply Chain Management in Meat Industry

Topics: Management, Supply chain management, Ethics, Logistics, Lean manufacturing, Quality assurance / Pages: 9 (2137 words) / Published: Sep 12th, 2008
The Burning Issue Meat is a major foodstuff in most western counties. Customers want they could purchase safe and fresh meat and this demand carries quite hard requirements to the meat supply chain management.

In June, 2008, Australian supermarket giant Woolworth, has been exposed that provide contaminated lambs to their customers (www.recalls.gov.au). Woolworths now has a shopping centre in almost every metropolitan and regional centre of Australia and offer food to millions of customers nationwide. This event may cause a large-range negative influence to public health and have a huge damage to this company brand reputation. Therefore, how to improve the meat supply chain management to satisfy consumer expectation and prevent such event occurs again, should be a big question to Woolworth and other meat retailers. It is suggested that these meat retailers could enhance their supply chain management through the following practices: adopting continually quality improvement methods, building long-term partnership with suppliers and operating business ethically.

The Overview

Meat is an important source of human diet and has significant effect on public health. In both the United Kingdom and Australia, total meat and poultry consumption is stable increase in last 30 years (Watson, 1994, p. 25) while it has been referred to as the food item in which customer confidence decreased most during recent decades (Becker, et al. 1998). Customers expect purchasing good quality products derived from healthy animals raised in a healthy environment, to be natural, fresh tasting and nutritious (Kennedy et al. 2004, p. 122). However, corporations fail to satisfy this expectation. The meat production and consumption is under heavy criticism in the last decade (Verbeke, 2000, p. 522).

Supply management may be able to help companies out of the hot water. Effective meat supply chain management could improve the product quality to meet the customers’ demand and bring



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