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Abstract

This study aims at contributing to a better understanding of the linkage between supply chain performance and possible performance improvement with respect to food quality and safety. Therefore, the paper addresses the question whether the level of collaborative planning and close supply chain relationships could help improve quality and safety of organic supply chains. The study was conducted as a part of the multi-disciplinary EU-wide survey of organic supply chains, carried out in 8 European countries. In this paper we report the results of the study regarding the structures and performance of six different organic supply chains in these eight European countries: milk (CH, UK), apples (DE, CH), pork (UK, NL), eggs (DE, UK), wheat (HU, IT, FR) and tomatoes (IT, NL). In depth interviews with key-informants were carried out in 2006 to investigate the structures, performance and relationships within the supply chains. Results show a low level of collaboration among various actors especially on cost and benefits sharing. Highly integrated supply chains show higher collaboration especially in the domain of Decision Synchronization. Trust and collaboration appear to be related with increased performance, while, the higher the perceived risk for quality and safety is, the higher the probability of supply chain collaboration.

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