Risk Management and Quality Assurance Through the Food Supply Chain – Case Studies in the Swedish Food Industry

A. Olsson*, C. Skjöldebrand
Department of Design Sciences,Lund University, Sweden.

© 2008 Olsson and Skjöldebrand

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Design Sciences,Lund University, Sweden; E-mail:


Processed food and eating out of the home are increasing phenomena, which presents new business opportunities for food manufacturers. However, the new food products require increased quality and safety, and thereby a more controlled distribution. The overall purpose of the research presented in this article is to describe the food supply chain from a critical context point of view in order to highlight the risks and the traceability issues. The paper expands previous discussions regarding critical control points into a critical context perspective in traceability in food supply chains. The initial part of the study is based on a literature review in the area of traceability combined with a number of related search words. A number of case studies have been carried out in order to map the food supply chains and better understand consumer standpoints. This paper describes how the system for distribution of food from manufacturer to end-user operates in Sweden. The chains studied all showed critical contexts. The paper suggests attitudinal changes towards overall supply chain responsibility, better resource utilisation and increased knowledge among actors. Furthermore it suggests supply chain actors to better integrate consumer insights on food safety perceptions in order to create value.

Keywords: Food supply chain, traceability, food safety, consumer value, case study.