Sustainable Distribution in the Consumer Goods Supply Chain

TitleSustainable Distribution in the Consumer Goods Supply Chain
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsCampos, JKucht, Schoeder, D
EditorKersten, W, Blecker, T, Ringle, CM
Title of ProceedingsSustainability in Logistics and Supply Chain Management
Conference LocationHamburg
ISBN Number978-3-7375-6206-5
Other NumbersISSN (print) 2365-4430, ISSN (online) 2365-5070
KeywordsConsumer Goods, Electric Vehicles, Supply Chain, Sustainability

Sustainability in logistics and efforts to increase economic gains while managing the
impact on the environment and on society have been discussed in all spheres of
companies’ decision-making processes. Especially in the consumer goods industry,
customers' pressures are becoming more intense, not only related to product stewardship
but also to supply chain responsibility. This paper intends to discuss how
companies have been preparing themselves or reacting to these new demands. Using
the content analysis method, practices published in public reports and implemented
by top ranked sustainable companies were collected and analyzed. The
practices were structured according to a newly developed framework for sustainable
supply chains and are focused on distribution activities. These activities account for
a large percentage of companies’ carbon footprint and therefore offer ample opportunity
for improvements in sustainability. The results show that the bulk of companies'
investments related to sustainability is in Equipment and Vehicles technologies,
especially battery electric vehicles. To understand more about this new trend,
a survey was conducted with 33 companies from different industries in order to detect
business users' profiles as well as their technical characteristics. The paper's results
include insights about the challenges and opportunities in the consumer goods
industry towards a sustainable supply chain network.