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Sustainability 2018, 10(3), 625;

Blue Water Footprint Management in a UK Poultry Supply Chain under Environmental Regulatory Constraints

Centre for International Manufacturing, Institute for Manufacturing (IfM), Department of Engineering, School of Technology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB3 0FS, UK
Laboratory of Statistics and Quantitative Analysis Methods, Division of Industrial Management, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, P.O. Box 461, 54124 Thessaloniki, Greece
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 January 2018 / Revised: 22 February 2018 / Accepted: 23 February 2018 / Published: 28 February 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Footprint in Supply Chain Management)
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Chicken is the most consumed meat in the UK, accounting for 40% of meat consumption, while national production sufficiency reaches about 80%. As a farmed animal product, chicken meat is responsible for significant freshwater appropriation volumes during its production cycle. In this context, this research aims at exploring freshwater dynamics in the UK processed poultry industry. Specifically, we develop a System Dynamics model to capture the blue water footprint, as a key sustainability performance indicator of a poultry supply chain, in the case that relevant environmental and regulatory constraints are applied. The model contributes towards investigating the impact of two potential policy-making scenarios, namely, the “water penalty” and the “water tax”, on the nexus between profitability and water usage across the poultry supply chain. Responding to the regulatory constraints, the food processor either reconfigures the supply chain through rethinking desired inventory levels or implements a water management intervention. The results indicate that investing in water-friendly production technologies could offer a greater advantage to sustainable supply chains in terms of blue water efficiency and profitability, compared to employing inventory management strategies. Overall, our analysis highlights that effective policy-making and technology-driven interventions could provide potential towards ensuring economic growth and environmental sustainability of the UK poultry sector. View Full-Text
Keywords: blue water footprint; environmental regulation; food supply chain; poultry industry; System Dynamics blue water footprint; environmental regulation; food supply chain; poultry industry; System Dynamics

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Tsolakis, N.; Srai, J.S.; Aivazidou, E. Blue Water Footprint Management in a UK Poultry Supply Chain under Environmental Regulatory Constraints. Sustainability 2018, 10, 625.

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