Sharon L. Forbes1, Suzanne Trafford2, Tim Craig3

1Associate Professor of Marketing Lincoln University Christchurch New Zealand

2Lecturer Lincoln University Christchurch New Zealand

3Analyst Rabobank New Zealand

Corresponding Author: Sharon Forbes



Society is increasingly putting pressure on producers to behave ethically and sustainably.  But, what is the role of retailers in this area?  The power of large supermarket retailers is growing at a global level and retailers are now operating as societal gatekeepers; the actions they are taking impact upon both producers and consumers.  This paper focuses on a single case study from New Zealand (the removal of caged eggs from supermarkets), to assess whether retailer actions are ethical, sustainable, and beneficial to producers and consumers.  Small food producers are particularly vulnerable; this paper concludes by recommending how producers could respond to retailer actions.


Sharon Forbes is an Associate Professor in Marketing at Lincoln University. Her academic qualifications are also from Lincoln University; in 2004 she completed a Bachelor of Viticulture & Oenology undergraduate degree, in 2005 a Commerce Honours degree, and in 2009 a PhD in Marketing. Sharon’s PhD examined the factors influencing the purchasing behaviour of wine consumers in New Zealand, Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States. Sharon’s research is centred on business and consumer studies in the wine and food sectors. In particular, she has led or participated in national and global studies that have examined consumer behaviour, supply chain management, disaster resilience, social media marketing, brand name perceptions, philanthropy, and the production and marketing of ‘green’ or ‘environmentally sustainable’ products.


Xiaomeng (Sharon) Lucock1, Kevin Old2, Keith Woodford3

1Lecturer in Agribusiness Management, Faculty of Agribusiness and Commerce, Lincoln University, New Zealand

2Senior Lecturer in Farm Management Research, Faculty of Agribusiness and Commerce, Lincoln University, New Zealand

3Honorary Professor of Agrifood Systems, Faculty of Agribusiness and Commerce, Lincoln University, New Zealand

Corresponding author:



What China wants has profound implications for the export income generated from New Zealand and Australia’s agrifood sectors. A better understanding of ‘down under’ advantages in accessing the Chinese market, what this market demands, and how Chinese people go about business will benefit these farming sectors. Employing qualitative empirical research, assisted by academic and industry literature, together with our own ongoing industry networks, this article addresses the question “what does China want from farming ‘down under’ in New Zealand and Australia?” The greatest advantage of these ‘down under’ nations lies within our production and supply chain systems which enable us to supply safe and high-quality food products that Chinese consumers demand. In order to fully utilise this advantage, farmers need to integrate themselves within supply chains, which have necessary knowhow in accessing the Chinese market. This knowhow starts with understanding the importance of, and length of time that it takes to build, trusting guanxi (关系, relationships). Following this understanding, there is a need to appreciate the roles that Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs), daigou and mianzi (面子, ‘face’ or prestige) play within the nuances of reaching Chinese consumers and dealing with Chinese agrifood business people.


Sharon Lucock is a Lecturer in Agribusiness Management at Lincoln University. She is a member of the New Zealand Institute of Primary Industry Management and the International Farm Management Association. She is also an Associate Director on the Board of New Zealand Contemporary China Research Centre (NZCCRC), representing Lincoln University. Sharon was brought up in Beijing, China. She came to New Zealand in 2002 after graduating with a Bachelor of Agricultural Science from China Agricultural University, and then furthered her academic training at Lincoln University with a Graduate Certificate in Commerce, a Master of Applied Science in Horticultural Management, and a PhD in Agribusiness Systems.Since 2011 Sharon has been lecturing and researching in agricultural management and international agrifood systems at Lincoln University, with a particular interest in New Zealand agrifood companies working in/with China. This research ranges across animal and crop-based industries, through to farmer livelihoods on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. Sharon’s research interests also extend to Chinese consumer choices in the big cities, as well as linkages and synergies between agribusiness and tourism industries, particularly in relation to Chinese tourists in New Zealand.


Gemma Lewis1, Anoma Ariyawardana2, Lilly Lim-Camacho3, Joseph Crawford

1Tasmanian School of Business and Economics, Launceston, Tasmania, Australia

2School of Agriculture and Food Sciences, The University of Queensland, Gatton, Queensland, Australia

3Agriculture and Global Change, CSIRO Agriculture and Food, St Lucia, Australia




Climate change, and its associated climate variability, has significant impacts on the wine industry and these changes will increasingly be felt along the whole chain of companies that produce, handle, process and market wine. There has been very little work in understanding how wine consumers perceive both the climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts of these companies. This study was conducted to explore Australian wine consumer perceptions towards climate change adaptation and the impacts of climate change on the growing, making and marketing of wine. Data were collected through four focus groups discussions, with a total of of 30 Australian wine consumers. This paper reports the preliminary results of data analysis. Findings revealed that participants are concerned for the production and quality of Australian wines, but their purchase decisions and drinking habits are still guided predominantly by non-environmental factors. They would, however, like to make informed decisions on wine purchase and consumption considering climate, which suggests wine businesses could benefit from educating consumers, and communicating specific climate adaptation information to consumers in a timely manner.


Dr Lewis is a Senior Lecturer in Management at the Tasmanian School of Business and Economics. Her research interests include inter-organisational collaboration and networking, value chains, entrepreneurship and small firm marketing. She has gained a strong reputation for working on externally funded grant projects, which comprise inter-disciplinary research teams and close collaboration with Australia’s agriculture industry. In the community, Dr Lewis is a long-standing member of Tasmania’s Cradle Coast Natural Resource Management (NRM) Committee and a Fellow of the Australian Marketing Institute.


M.J.J. van den Heever1, W.A. Lombard2 & H. Jordaan3

1Postgraduate student, Department of Agriculture Economics, University of the Free State

2Lecturer, Department of Agricultural Economics, University of the Free State

3Senior lecturer, Department of Agricultural Economics, University of the Free State

Corresponding author:



Beef consumption in South Africa increased by 1.6% from 2016 to 2017 and it is expected that the total beef consumption will expand by 19% over the next decade.  Most South African consumers focus on affordability followed by health and appearance when buying meat and don’t necessarily look at the meat classification. Research has shown that the South African beef classification system is used as a grading system due to the preference of classes, which defeats the original purpose of the system. The aim of this study is to compare the current red meat classification system used in South Africa to classification and grading systems used in other countries to provide alternatives when amending the shortcomings of the current classification system. Using international classification/grading systems can provide guidance on how to amend the current South African classification system. This study provides an adapted beef grading system adapted according to the Meat Standard Australia system that can be used in South Africa. In the suggested system beef will be graded according to pH measurements and days aged. This study can be used by decision makers when to assist in adapting the current beef classification system.


I, Mario van den Heever, am a postgraduate student at the University of the Free State where I am also a research assistant at the Department of Agricultural Economics. I do research regarding the fluctuations of commercial red meat prices for the Red Meat Producers Organisation. I completed my degree in B.Sc. Agric in Animal Sciences and Agriculture Economics. I am an enthusiastic runner and like being outdoors. Being an ambassador for sustainable agriculture is my dream.


Agata Malak-Rawlikowska1, Edward Majewski1

1Warsaw University of Life Sciences – SGGW, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Nowoursynowska, Warsaw, Poland



There is an on-going scientific and policy debate how to utilize the local food systems and Short Food Supply Chains (SFSC) in order to provide beneficial solutions to the society and rural areas. Producers that participate in these systems are supposed to gain a higher share of the value added and contribute to the development of local territories. It is believed, that local food systems and shortened food supply chains provide also benefits to the natural environment. However, to date, very little empirical evidence exists on the quantitative impact of varied types of food supply chains.

Given the shortcomings in the literature this presentation focuses on the quantitative assessment of economic, environmental and social sustainability of selected Short Food Supply Chains. The evaluation of an impact of SFSC draws upon a set of indicators developed within the Strength2Food project.

This contribution presents the first preliminary results of case studies conducted in Poland and France. A variety of products were investigated to explore and compare diverse value chains.

Our results confirm that farmers usually participate in more than one chain, diversifying distribution channels. Some farmers participate both in short and long channels. In economic terms, (price premium, added value) SFSCs are found to be more beneficial for farmers, while it seems that „long supply” channels generate less negative environmental impacts per unit of production measured by carbon footprint. Our findings also suggest that farmers participating in SFSC perceive a greater bargaining power in comparison to their counterparts involved in longer market chains


Henning Otte Hansen

Ph.D., Senior Advisor, Department of Food and Resource Economics, University of Copenhagen



Agricultural cooperatives in the Western world have proven to be efficient in many cases. Therefore, it is likely that other countries with a less developed agricultural industry can learn from the experiences, both good and bad, of Western countries.

A number of drivers behind the formation and development of cooperatives which are significant for the spreading and transfer of cooperative ownership can be identified. Agriculture and the food industry have several chronic challenges, but cooperative ownership can, to a large extent, solve these problems, while at the same time industrial and socio-economic benefits can, potentially, be achieved.

Based on these factors and assessments and input from stakeholders in countries planning a stronger agricultural cooperative industry, a number of opportunities and barriers have been identified with regard to the transfer of cooperative ownership in agriculture.

To a certain extent, experience from cooperative companies in the Western world can be applied to the rest of the world. However, the cooperative model must be adapted to the specific situation in each country. It is rarely possible to transfer experience directly from, for example, Danish cooperatives to countries with a less developed cooperative industry. There are also often a number of economic, cultural, and organisational barriers that need to be overcome.


Henning Otte Hansen is senior advisor at the Department of Food and Resource Economics at University of Copenhagen, Denmark. Henning has a Ph.D. in agricultural policy, and master degrees in both agricultural economics and business economics. He has worked 20 years in agricultural organisations and companies. He has now returned to the academic and scientific field, and he is now doing research and teaching. He mainly works with food economics, agro and food companies and food markets. He has written 12 books – among others “Food Econimics – industry and markets” from Routledge and recently a book about strategic challenges in agro and food companies. He has written more than 500 papers and articles and has held more than 600 presentations.


Henning Otte Hansen

Ph.D., senior advisor, Department of Food and Resource Economics, University of Copenhagen



The global agri-food industry is facing a number of strategic challenges, which demand that continual strategic adjustments and changes be made in companies. Driven, in particular, by globalisation, increasing international competition and technological developments, the industry must continually develop in order to maintain and improve long-term international competitiveness.

Business models, methods and approaches have been developed to identify strategic problems and solutions for the industry. The aim of this paper is to analyse how selected agri-food companies recognized and have tackled the challenges, and what lessons can be learned. Four agri-food companies or industries with international dimensions and significance are analysed. All companies have been influenced by globalisation, liberalisation and increasing international competition. The article illustrates how changing competitive conditions made some the companies choose similar solutions, while they made others choose different solutions – connected to strategic business models.

Some of the companies focused on cost competitiveness through reallocation and structural development, while others chose to optimise their competencies through vertical integration, cooperation and global strategic alliances.

Another company could, through innovation, move into a blue ocean. The creation of unique products and new markets resulted in brand new competitive parameters.

Finally, the last company could generate the necessary growth through collaboration with institutional investors as well as through investments abroad. A focus on the core business was maintained as a strategic choice, and the strategic development was anchored in the entire organisation.


Henning Otte Hansen is senior advisor at the Department of Food and Resource Economics at University of Copenhagen, Denmark. Henning has a Ph.D. in agricultural policy, and master degrees in both agricultural economics and business economics. He has worked 20 years in agricultural organisations and companies. He has now returned to the academic and scientific field, and he is now doing research and teaching. He mainly works with food economics, agro and food companies and food markets. He has written 12 books – among others “Food Econimics – industry and markets” from Routledge and recently a book about strategic challenges in agro and food companies. He has written more than 500 papers and articles and has held more than 600 presentations.


Uthai Pongpakamulnarm1Elizabeth Jackson1

1School of Management, Curtin University



This research aims to explore the trend of sustainability policies and practices in Australian seafood product supply chains and to identify the sustainability practices of supply chain members over time.  A qualitative approach to content analysis was used to collect and analyse data from the annual reports of seven Australian companies in the seafood supply chain as ranked by their market share in three categories: feed production, processing, and retailing. The data were collected from annual reports over the ten-year timeframe; analysis was conducted in NVivo12.  It was found that supply chain members placed sustainability practice as their business priority. The results revealed the trend that companies have become more aware of the impact of sustainability on their business over time. The results of the data analysis show the frequencies of references of each code: “sustainability”, “traceability”, “waste management”, “quality management”, and “supply chain strategy”. The code “sustainability” accounted for the highest of frequencies whereas, despite being a dominant theme in the literature, “traceability” was less mentioned throughout the results. The value of this research lies in the identification of the gaps between theory and practice when it comes to traceability of seafood products through the supply chain.


Elizabeth Jackson has an industry and educational background in agribusiness and aspires to being a well-connected leader in the discipline of agri-food supply chain systems. With a first-class Honours degree in Agribusiness Marketing and an MBA, Elizabeth has held various management position at the CBH Group and in other WA agribusinesses. In 2008, Elizabeth completed an ARC-Linkage PhD studentship to study for the WA wool industry. She then worked at Newcastle University (UK) where she was the Degree Programme Director of the BSc Agribusiness Management degree and published in food marketing, supply chain management and maritime economics. In 2014, Elizabeth moved to the University of London’s Royal Veterinary College where she became a Senior Lecturer in Business Management and published in agribusiness and food supply chains. She was the Course Director for the College’s Professional Doctorate degrees. Elizabeth is now a Senior Lecturer within Curtin Business School where her teaching relates to supply chain management, procurement and distribution and she continues to investigate agri-food systems.

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