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Extending environmental management beyond the firm boundaries: An empirical study of Dutch food and beverage firms

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  • Grekova, K.
  • Bremmers, H.J.
  • Trienekens, J.H.
  • Kemp, R.G.M.
  • Omta, S.W.F.
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    Abstract

    Consumer demand for environmental sustainability and for affordable prices calls for cooperation and information exchange in food chains to reduce joint environmental impact, known as externally-oriented environmental management (E-EM). E-EM is increasingly regarded as a management tool to simultaneously improve environmental, operational, and business performance. Understanding the factors that influence managers to develop E-EM helps to design environmentally and economically sustainable food chains. The prior research regarding these factors is not exhaustive and demanded a multi-period approach. This study expands the understanding of the factors that influence managers to develop E-EM with a multi-period empirical research. We address the effects of external institutional pressures (regulative, normative, and culturally-cognitive) and the level of in-company environmental management (I-EM) on E-EM, which involves information exchange in the chain, cooperation with suppliers and customers. The analysis relies on survey data of 255 and 96 Dutch food and beverage (F&B) processors from 2002 and 2010 respectively. The findings indicate that respondents have considerably improved I-EM over time. I-EM requires in-company pzrocedures ranging from environmental strategy formulation to the managerial review of achieved results to assure continuous improvement of environmental performance. F&B processors that had already achieved a high level of I-EM are more likely to develop E-EM. Also growing normative and culturally-cognitive pressures from supply chain partners and increasingly from long-term public–private environmental covenants significantly influenced E-EM implementation. However, regulative pressure from public authorities had no impact. It appeared that E-EM is influenced mostly by institutional pressures when the firms are less experienced with I-EM.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal International Journal of Production Economics.

    Volume (Year): 152 (2014)
    Issue (Month): C ()
    Pages: 174-187

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:proeco:v:152:y:2014:i:c:p:174-187

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ijpe

    Related research

    Keywords: Sustainable supply chain management; Institutional pressure; Natural resource based view; Environmental management systems; Food industry;

    References

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