• Sustainable food security futures: Perspectives on food waste and information across the food supply chain

      Irani, Zahir; Sharif, Amir M. (2016)
      The purpose of this paper is to signpost the genesis of food security and associated factors such that organisations, enterprises, policy makers and interested stakeholders can seek to explore and understand this important societal issue. The challenges that food security poses are eclectic in nature and cut through country, society, organisation and individual boundaries. Only through identifying these factors – hence identifying underlying factors of food waste and usage of information within food supply chains to untangle them – can we adopt enterprise interventions in order to initiate and mitigate food security risk. As a viewpoint piece, there is no empirical work to report in this paper. An exploratory review of the literature has allowed for the extraction of food security concerns that need the attention of stakeholders across the enterprise to ensure robust food supply chains can be are created, maintained and sustained through a better understanding and usage of information, knowledge and data This paper articulates six constructs that underpin the challenges of establishing food security. It is suggested that information relating to factors may support decision-makers within communities, organisations and enterprises to better understand these factors that then contribute towards enhanced food security. Relevant strategies or policies can then emerge and be developed such that strategic as well as operational interventions can be prioritised across national, regional or industry level. Underpinning the above, the waste within and across the food supply chain contributes to the six factors, also highlighting where additional focus may need to be applied to sustain food supply chains. This paper is a position paper that does not offer factual insight but rather highlights a direction of thought that others can consider exploring as part of wider research agendas in the topical area where enterprise, organisational, and information-based contributions may support the development of strategy-led food security policy. This paper provides reassuring insights that will help decision and policy makers assemble their thoughts when it comes to prioritising their communications and interventions amongst organisational/enterprise-level stakeholder groups involved in food security and food supply chain contexts. This paper has highlighted the need for more research around the human and organisational factors that are identified as both underpinning the need for food security and, as drivers of waste throughout the food supply chain. Indeed, there is further work needed to highlight the inter-relationships that exist and, which then feed into resulting interventions. To raise the importance of food security amongst differing stakeholder community groups at the organisational and enterprise level.