Food systems are playing a key role in the transition toward a more social, environmental and economical sustainable way of production and consumption. Within the food industry, meat-based products are responsible of an important part of the food supply chain global impact. Sustainable practices and production systems affect the efficiency and mitigate the environmental and social impact. Whitin the European context, the technological development is fostering the spread of sustainability practices and of more effective sustainability measures, often oriented to international frameworks. In Italy, a country characterized by high variety of fresh meat and cured meat-based products, there is a lack of research on social and environmental accounting, nor on the disclosure of sustainability practices. The main goal of this paper is to investigate on the diffusion of sustainability practices through a critical assessment conducted among these companies. The area under analysis includes, but is not limited to, the analysis of governance, communities, supply chain and environmental impacts. For each area it has been mapped and discussed issues, indicators and the implementation of international standards and diffused best practices. The focus, according to the existing literature, is on supply chain best processing practices and the discussion of the relative environmental product impact. This focus includes the analysis of carbon emissions, technological readiness of products packaging, the intensity of water withdrawals, water and waste disposal. The findings show a wide disclosure of supply chain and product sustainability issues, while the environmental and governance areas are less thorough. One of the main implications for the industry is the need to adopt a holistic approach to sustainability walking and talking, also considering what is happening in the others food sub-industries.
Caccialanza, A., Sartori, A., Gubelli, S., Giannini, F. R., Capri, E., The Sustainability of Meat and Cured Meat Supply Chain: Where Are we Now?, in Fellegara, A. M., Torelli, R., Caccialanza, A. (ed.), Sustainable Transition of Meat and Cured Meat Supply Chain, Springer Nature Switzerland AG, NN 2023: <<CSR, SUSTAINABILITY, ETHICS & GOVERNANCE>>, 223- 242. 10.1007/978-3-031-34977-5_15 [https://hdl.handle.net/10807/247115]