Exploration of logistics and quality control activities in view of context characteristics and postharvest losses in fresh produce chains

A case study for tomatoes

Lesley Macheka, Elsbeth Spelt, Jack G.A.J. van der Vorst, Pieternel A. Luning*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Postharvest losses in fresh produce chains are a major threat to food security, especially in transition countries. To develop effective intervention strategies for postharvest losses reduction, it is important to first understand the core logistics and quality control activities that could affect postharvest losses in these chains. In this study, a diagnostic tool was developed and used to assess the implementation level of core logistics and quality control activities, the vulnerability of the system due to the context in which it operates, and the actual postharvest losses. Based upon a literature review, the context characteristics are divided into product, process, organisation, and supply chain environment characteristics to assess the context vulnerability to postharvest losses. The identified core logistics activities are planning on the amount of fresh produce to harvest and process, selecting issuing policies, selecting mode of transportation and type of vehicle, and vehicle scheduling and routing. Maturity determination at harvest, deciding on harvest moment, harvesting, packing, and storage practices, use of grading standards, package material, temperature monitoring during storage and transportation, and equipment maintenance are the core quality control activities identified. The tool was applied to three groups of farmers operating in a tomato supply chain in Zimbabwe. The major findings are that commercial farmers recorded lower postharvest losses (1%) as compared to subsistence farmers (3%), the context for commercial farmers is less vulnerable to the generation of postharvest losses as compared to that for subsistence farmers, and logistics and quality control activities for commercial farmers are implemented at a more advanced level. The tool provides differentiated assessment that allows users to identify improvement opportunities to achieve higher performance for the activities and to reduce context vulnerability.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)221-234
JournalFood Control
Volume77
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Fingerprint

postharvest losses
fresh produce
Lycopersicon esculentum
Quality Control
quality control
tomatoes
case studies
farmers
supply chain
Zimbabwe
equipment maintenance and repair
Food Supply
Farmers
food security
Maintenance
Organizations
planning
Equipment and Supplies
Temperature
monitoring

Keywords

  • Context characteristics
  • Diagnostic tool
  • Fresh produce
  • Logistics control
  • Postharvest losses
  • Quality control

Cite this

@article{22ce2d2b141f47c0900a2b7d236410e3,
title = "Exploration of logistics and quality control activities in view of context characteristics and postharvest losses in fresh produce chains: A case study for tomatoes",
abstract = "Postharvest losses in fresh produce chains are a major threat to food security, especially in transition countries. To develop effective intervention strategies for postharvest losses reduction, it is important to first understand the core logistics and quality control activities that could affect postharvest losses in these chains. In this study, a diagnostic tool was developed and used to assess the implementation level of core logistics and quality control activities, the vulnerability of the system due to the context in which it operates, and the actual postharvest losses. Based upon a literature review, the context characteristics are divided into product, process, organisation, and supply chain environment characteristics to assess the context vulnerability to postharvest losses. The identified core logistics activities are planning on the amount of fresh produce to harvest and process, selecting issuing policies, selecting mode of transportation and type of vehicle, and vehicle scheduling and routing. Maturity determination at harvest, deciding on harvest moment, harvesting, packing, and storage practices, use of grading standards, package material, temperature monitoring during storage and transportation, and equipment maintenance are the core quality control activities identified. The tool was applied to three groups of farmers operating in a tomato supply chain in Zimbabwe. The major findings are that commercial farmers recorded lower postharvest losses (1{\%}) as compared to subsistence farmers (3{\%}), the context for commercial farmers is less vulnerable to the generation of postharvest losses as compared to that for subsistence farmers, and logistics and quality control activities for commercial farmers are implemented at a more advanced level. The tool provides differentiated assessment that allows users to identify improvement opportunities to achieve higher performance for the activities and to reduce context vulnerability.",
keywords = "Context characteristics, Diagnostic tool, Fresh produce, Logistics control, Postharvest losses, Quality control",
author = "Lesley Macheka and Elsbeth Spelt and {van der Vorst}, {Jack G.A.J.} and Luning, {Pieternel A.}",
year = "2017",
doi = "10.1016/j.foodcont.2017.02.037",
language = "English",
volume = "77",
pages = "221--234",
journal = "Food Control",
issn = "0956-7135",
publisher = "Elsevier",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Exploration of logistics and quality control activities in view of context characteristics and postharvest losses in fresh produce chains

T2 - A case study for tomatoes

AU - Macheka, Lesley

AU - Spelt, Elsbeth

AU - van der Vorst, Jack G.A.J.

AU - Luning, Pieternel A.

PY - 2017

Y1 - 2017

N2 - Postharvest losses in fresh produce chains are a major threat to food security, especially in transition countries. To develop effective intervention strategies for postharvest losses reduction, it is important to first understand the core logistics and quality control activities that could affect postharvest losses in these chains. In this study, a diagnostic tool was developed and used to assess the implementation level of core logistics and quality control activities, the vulnerability of the system due to the context in which it operates, and the actual postharvest losses. Based upon a literature review, the context characteristics are divided into product, process, organisation, and supply chain environment characteristics to assess the context vulnerability to postharvest losses. The identified core logistics activities are planning on the amount of fresh produce to harvest and process, selecting issuing policies, selecting mode of transportation and type of vehicle, and vehicle scheduling and routing. Maturity determination at harvest, deciding on harvest moment, harvesting, packing, and storage practices, use of grading standards, package material, temperature monitoring during storage and transportation, and equipment maintenance are the core quality control activities identified. The tool was applied to three groups of farmers operating in a tomato supply chain in Zimbabwe. The major findings are that commercial farmers recorded lower postharvest losses (1%) as compared to subsistence farmers (3%), the context for commercial farmers is less vulnerable to the generation of postharvest losses as compared to that for subsistence farmers, and logistics and quality control activities for commercial farmers are implemented at a more advanced level. The tool provides differentiated assessment that allows users to identify improvement opportunities to achieve higher performance for the activities and to reduce context vulnerability.

AB - Postharvest losses in fresh produce chains are a major threat to food security, especially in transition countries. To develop effective intervention strategies for postharvest losses reduction, it is important to first understand the core logistics and quality control activities that could affect postharvest losses in these chains. In this study, a diagnostic tool was developed and used to assess the implementation level of core logistics and quality control activities, the vulnerability of the system due to the context in which it operates, and the actual postharvest losses. Based upon a literature review, the context characteristics are divided into product, process, organisation, and supply chain environment characteristics to assess the context vulnerability to postharvest losses. The identified core logistics activities are planning on the amount of fresh produce to harvest and process, selecting issuing policies, selecting mode of transportation and type of vehicle, and vehicle scheduling and routing. Maturity determination at harvest, deciding on harvest moment, harvesting, packing, and storage practices, use of grading standards, package material, temperature monitoring during storage and transportation, and equipment maintenance are the core quality control activities identified. The tool was applied to three groups of farmers operating in a tomato supply chain in Zimbabwe. The major findings are that commercial farmers recorded lower postharvest losses (1%) as compared to subsistence farmers (3%), the context for commercial farmers is less vulnerable to the generation of postharvest losses as compared to that for subsistence farmers, and logistics and quality control activities for commercial farmers are implemented at a more advanced level. The tool provides differentiated assessment that allows users to identify improvement opportunities to achieve higher performance for the activities and to reduce context vulnerability.

KW - Context characteristics

KW - Diagnostic tool

KW - Fresh produce

KW - Logistics control

KW - Postharvest losses

KW - Quality control

U2 - 10.1016/j.foodcont.2017.02.037

DO - 10.1016/j.foodcont.2017.02.037

M3 - Article

VL - 77

SP - 221

EP - 234

JO - Food Control

JF - Food Control

SN - 0956-7135

ER -