Marketing potential of corporate social responsibility in supply chains

F.J.H.M. Verhees, A. Kuipers, M.T.G. Meulenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


This paper provides a method to assess the customer value and marketing possibilities of increasing transparency about the corporate social responsibility (CSR) of supply chains. The willingness of small firms, in this study farmers in food supply chains, to make information available about certain CSR issues is measured and compared with CSR issues about which consumers value more information. This will identify the CSR issues about which it would be appropriate for supply chains to increase their transparency. Moreover, farmers in supply chains are grouped based on the information about CSR issues that they are willing to make available and matched with consumer segments that have a need for such information. The method is demonstrated for Dutch dairy supply chains, but it can easily be adapted to other (food) supply chains. Transparency about the CSR issue `food safety¿ has marketing potential for Dutch dairy supply chains and can be increased relatively simply. Transparency about the CSR issue `animal welfare¿ also has good marketing potential, but increasing the transparency about animal welfare is considered difficult. Transparency about the CSR issues `environment¿ and `revenues and costs¿ has little marketing potential for Dutch dairy supply chains. The existence of market segments that have a need for information about certain CSR issues and that can be matched with groups of farmers willing to provide this information shows that there are marketing opportunities for product differentiation and target marketing in the Dutch dairy supply chain. Keywords: corporate social responsibility, food supply chain
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-152
JournalJournal on Chain and Network Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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