Green supply chain management in manufacturing companies in New Zealand: A comparative case study analysis

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Elting, Jens
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Master of Business
Unitec Institute of Technology
Howard, Frederick
Marriott, Jeff
Masters Thesis
Ngā Upoko Tukutuku (Māori subject headings)
green supply chain management
food and beverage industry
environmental sustainability
ANZSRC Field of Research Code (2020)
Elting, J. (2009). Green supply chain management in manufacturing companies in New Zealand: A comparative case study analysis. (Unpublished document submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Business). Unitec Institute of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand. Retrieved from
This thesis examines the factors which a company must consider when implementing Green Supply Chain Management (GSCM) practices. Three companies from the New Zealand “Food and Beverage” (F&B) sector are examined in their approach to be more sustainable. The research method employed is comparative case study analysis. Semi-structured interviews are held with two relevant managers from each company. A theoretical framework is derived from the literature to guide the research. The categories of this framework correspond with the research sub-question and include: Strategic and operational planning; Management structure, systems, and decision making; Management of people and company culture; Relationships with supply chain members. Due to the case-by-case management in two of the examined organizations, the initial aim to compare different systematic approaches was impeded. Nevertheless some similarities and important factors were identified. Despite being in the same industry, each company is in a different situation influencing its strategic approach to GSCM. One finding is the importance of including an environmental strategy into the overall company strategy and deriving from this consistent goals and objectives and eventually concrete operational instructions. Top-management support is crucial for effectively working GSCM practices. A flat hierarchical structure might be helpful for successful GSCM, but therefore the inherent advantages of a flat hierarchy have to be exploited. Employee involvement is recognised as another crucial element of GSCM. An environmentally friendly company culture is beneficial and should be derived from the companies’ environmental vision and/or mission. Collaborations with suppliers are perceived to be productive and essential to develop innovative products. Other tools, like supplier questionnaires, can help to improve the environmental impact of the whole supply chain.
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