Management Research Project

Introduction to Impact of Limited Transparency

The supply chain has become more complicated over the years with the presence of technology and innovation. Alongst all these processes, it is essential to understand that transparency is an important aspect of every company. This is especially true for companies that create products that are consumed by the customers due to the rising health concerns. It has been found that customers want to use the products of a company they can trust; and a company they can trust is a company that has nothing to hide from them. Many technologies are also being developed in order to make the transaction in between an organization and a customer more transparent. In this research paper, the importance of transparency is highlighted in the supplier-customer relations of the supply chain. The consequences of limited transparency are discussed along with understanding the importance of this transparency.

Background of Impact of Limited Transparency

Modern customers are increasingly demanding safe products, are of high quality and healthy (Trienekens 2011). Customers constantly want to know where the products are made, how they are made and how their pricing takes place. Providing the customers, vendors and other parties of the supply chain information about the source and production of a particular product is essentially what supply chain transparency is (Bateman and Bonnani 2019). This concept was virtually unknown a couple of decades back but now commands a broad spectrum in the retail sector (Bateman and Bonnani 2019). In the last few years, research has shown that customers are willing to pay 2-10% more for products from organizations that offer a greater supply chain transparency (Bateman and Bonnani 2019).

Nowadays, the importance of transparency in the supply chain has increased a great deal (Kashmanian 2017). In the food industry especially, since clarity about the safety and production of food items is important from the consumer’s point of view. Not only that, but transparency also allows supply chain optimization, innovation and handling competitiveness in various manners. Organizations have started to realize the importance of transparency and how not being transparent is costing them customers and customer loyalty (Kashmanian 2017). Companies like Fruit Logistica are aiming at achieving a more transparent supply system (Wyman 2018). Using various technologies and other innovations, the company is striving to be more transparent with their fruits and vegetables supply chain, product life cycle and transportation history (Wyman 2018). The company is trying to innovate with the presence of “Blockchain” like other organizations like Wal-Mart and Carrefour to increase data transparency (Wyman 2018).

Scope

This study will be covering the effects that limited transparency has on a particular organization and the supply chain of that organization. Special attention will be given to the customer point of view and why transparency is becoming increasingly important for a particular customer. The study will be surrounding only fruits and vegetables related supply chain and not any other product. The purpose of this study is to highlight why exactly has transparency gained so much importance in the last few years. For this research, the method of secondary research will be taken and several cases related to fruit and vegetable vendors and distributors will be studied. The concept of Blockchain management will also be studied briefly and inferences will be drawn for its future implications.

Aims, objectives and research questions:

The study aims to provide insights into the impact that limited transparency has on the fruits and vegetables supply chain management, especially on the supplier-customer relationship.

The Objectives of the study are as follows:

  1. Understand the various reasons and fallacies that contribute to the limited transparency in fruits and vegetables supply chain management.
  2. Understand the reasons why transparency plays an important role in the supply chain management of a specific product.
  3. Highlight the impact of the limited transparency on the supply chain management of a specific product.
  4. State a few ways in which the transparency factor can be improved in a product or organization supply chain management.

The research questions that need to be answered are as follows:

  • What causes are responsible for the limited transparency that is present in the supply chain management related to fruits and vegetables?
  • What effects or impacts do these limitations in transparency have on the supply chain management?
  • Why is transparency important in supply chain management?
  • Is the analysis of the supply chain important for a product or an organization?
  • How can transparency be improved in a supply chain?
  • Is Blockchain the future in the supply chain of a particular organization?

Limitations

The research is using the secondary method of research instead of the primary method which is one of the limitations of this research. The secondary method was chosen due to the time and resources restriction. Since the primary method was not chosen, all the data mentioned in the paper is drawn from other resources and inferences are drawn based on them. No primary research was conducted for this study. Another limitation of this research is the focus on fruits and vegetable supply chain. Specific focus is given on the supply chain related to fruits and vegetables and no other sector or product is taken into consideration. Thus, this paper does not comment on the overall importance of transparency in a supply chain in all the sectors, rather only considers the supply chain management of fruits and vegetable. Similarly, only organizations that are in the fruits and vegetables business are taken into consideration for this research paper.

References for Impact of Limited Transparency

 Bateman, A., & Bonanni, L. (2019). What Supply Chain Transparency Means. Retrieved from https://hbr.org/2019/08/what-supply-chain-transparency-really-means#:%7E:text=Defining%20Transparency,more%20consumers%20are%20demanding%20it

Kashmanian, R. (2017). Building Greater Transparency in Supply Chains to Advance Sustainability. Enviornmental Equality Management, 26(3), 73-104.

Trienekens, J. H., Wognum, P. M., Beulens, A. J. M., & van der Vorst, J. G. A. J. (2012). Transparency in complex dynamic food supply chains. Advanced Engineering Informatics, 26(1), 55–65.

Wyman, O. (2018). Disruption in fruit and vegetable distribution. Retrieved from https://www.oliverwyman.de/content/dam/oliver-wyman/v2-de/publications/2018/Mai/Fruit_Logistica_Trend_Report_2018_Part1_2_3.pdf

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