Defra - Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Science Search

Science and Research Projects

Return to Science Search homepage   Return to Project List

Cereal supply chain analysis - FO0440

The challenge to increase food production in response to a growing world population cannot be underestimated. To do this whilst addressing the need to conserve resources, enhance the environment and mitigate climate change makes this task even more demanding. Cereal production is at the heart of the food chain and is the UK’s most important crop. It is recognised from observing best practice across the agri-food industry that there is considerable scope to increase competitiveness of cereal supply chains; and to do so in a sustainable manner.Understanding the drivers to achieve sustainable growth is key. By recognising the pressure points within the chain that constrain production and efficiency, this can provide opportunities to achieve wider success if good practice can do adopted. This project aims to map the chain, identify pressure points and present good practice through case studies. The further challenge, which the project will also address, is how policy levers under a reformed CAP might be used to effect supply chain efficiency and how the knowledge demonstrated through good practice can be transferred and taken up industry wide.The key objectives for the project are to review the UK cereal sector and to identify examples of good practice, which will inform policy makers concerned with delivering CAP reform measures. The key work areas are:

• Mapping of the cereal supply chain through desk research and consultation with representative organisations. The interrelationships along the chain will be studied and best practice that will promote competitiveness identified.
• Targeted interviews with businesses in the supply chain to consider factors that will influence change.
• An industry workshop to test the findings of the desk research and interviews, evaluate the potential uptake of best practice and consider the opportunities for greater collaborative working along the supply chain to improve competitiveness.
• Further work will consider the potential opportunities within the CAP to stimulate change and whether there is an increased role for producer groups and organisations in achieving improved competitiveness.

The outputs of the project will include:
- Cereal supply chain map covering different product routes (milling, malting, animal feed etc)- An evaluation and prioritisation of findings from the research assessed by stakeholders and businesses
- identification of CAP supported policy levers that might accelerate change
- Recommendations on optimising knowledge transfer with industry in future programmes aimed at boosting supply chain competitivenessThe team delivering this project is an industry leading partnership of complementary skills comprising EFFP with practical experience in helping farmers and food businesses change the way they work together; Cranfield University, a world renowned centre for supply chain expertise and AEA, a global environmental consultancy. The collective expertise brought by this partnership will generate real insight and a route map to greater competitiveness in the cereal supply chain.
Project Documents
• FRP - Final Report : Evid4 cereal supply chainFFG1141   (2498k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2012

To: 2012

Cost: £51,800
Contractor / Funded Organisations
European Farming and Food Partnerships Ltd
Resource efficient and resilient food chain              
Fields of Study
Resource Efficient and Resilient Food Chain