The purpose of this paper is to investigate the significant supply chain issues in the small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) food industry. The objectives are to identify the major themes and the dynamic evolution of SME food supply chain (FSC) issues, the current research trends, the different modelling approaches used in SME FSC, and the most addressed SME food sector.Design/methodology/approachIn all, 3,733 published articles from 2002 to 2018 in the Clarivate Analytics Web of Science database were collected, from which 1,091 articles were shortlisted for the review. The authors used bibliographic coupling combined with co-word analysis to identify the historical relations of the research themes that emerged during the periods 2002–2014 and 2002–2018.FindingsThis research identified five major research themes such as production and distribution in alternative food networks, relationship, safety and standards in the FSC, greenhouse gas (GHG) emission impact of the farm food system, traceability and product quality in FSC and asymmetric price transmission in the FSC. Among the identified themes, GHG emission impact of the farm food system and traceability and product quality in the FSC have received increasing attention in recent years. The dairy sector is the most addressed sector (36 per cent), followed by fruits and vegetables (27 per cent), meat and poultry (18 per cent), seafood (10 per cent) and grains and oilseed (8 per cent). It is also identified that the dairy sector has received significant attention in the “GHG Emission impact of farm food system” theme. Similarly, meat and poultry sectors have received much attention in the “Traceability and product quality in the food supply chain” theme. Also, the authors identified that the empirical modelling approaches are the most commonly used solution methodology, followed by the conceptual/qualitative methods in the SME FSC.Originality/valueThis study maps and summarizes the existing knowledge base of supply chain issues in the SME food sector. The results of this review provide the major research areas, most commonly used approaches and food sectors addressed. This study also highlights the research gaps and potential future research direction.
Journal of Advances in Management Research – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 14, 2020
Keywords: SME; Literature review; Supply chain; Dairy; Meat; Fruit and vegetables
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