Date: 06 Jul 2011

Best Practice Application of LCM by Retailers to Improve Product Supply Chain Sustainability

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Abstract

Retailers are strategically positioned to leverage environmental improvement across product supply chains. This paper condenses retailer best practice into a proposed framework for systematic supply chain improvement based on eight best environmental management practice (BEMP) techniques. Third party product environmental certification is the preferred mechanism of improvement owing to transparency and credibility advantages, followed by use of retailer-defined environmental requirements, and implementation of supplier improvement programmes based on benchmarking and dissemination of better management practices. A BEMP to encourage consumption of front-runner ecological products is defined based on use of front-runner ecolabels. The performance of front-runner retailers is used to derive benchmarks of excellence for each technique, primarily expressed as sales shares of improved products within priority product groups. Life cycle management underpins best practice.