Topic 2.3: Sustainable Food Supply Chain Aspects

The UK Sustainable Development Commission (SDC; DEFRA 2002) has combined many different stakeholder views to produce an internationally applicable description of ‘sustainable food supply chains’ as those that: 

  1. Produce safe, healthy products in response to market demands and ensure that all consumers have access to nutritious food and to accurate information about food products.
  2. Support the viability and diversity of rural and urban economies and communities.
  3. Enable viable livelihoods to be made from sustainable land management, both through the market and through payments for public benefits.
  4. Respect and operate within the biological limits of natural resources (especially soil, water and biodiversity).
  5. Achieve consistently high standards of environmental performance by reducing energy consumption, minimizing resource inputs and using renewable energy wherever possible.
  6. Ensure a safe and hygienic working environment and high social welfare and training for all employees involved in the food chain.
  7. Achieve consistently high standards of animal health and welfare.
  8. Sustain the resource available for growing food and supplying other public benefits over time, except where alternative land uses are essential to meet other needs of society.