Disposable containers are widely employed throughout food supply chains (FSCs) to transport, sell, or store perishable products. These containers are made of several materials, like plastic and cardboard. Albeit the widespread use of such containers, not all the materials are suitable for food contact, and a barrier layer between perishable products and the container is needed. Moreover, a high percentage of waste along the FSC consists of primary and secondary packages. Food Catering Supply Chain (FCSC), made of multi-stage logistic networks, represents a challenging scenario for minimizing packaging disposal. Chosen for reducing waste, reusable plastic containers (RPCs) are gaining ground within the food supply chain network. We propose a multi-objective optimization model to improve the business as usual (BAU) of FCSC, quantifying saving in terms of cost and environmental impact due to the employment of RPCs. The model virtualizes the logistic and operational costs as well as the transportation and disposal impact of reusable and recyclable plastic containers. This paper evaluates the use of RPCs by comparing the performances of as-is and to-be scenarios derived from an industrial case study. The analyzed network comprises perishable product suppliers, RPC poolers, cross-docking facilities, customers, and collectors. The results show the reduction of environmental impacts and logistic, handling, and operational costs in the proposed FCSC topology. A new network configuration and insights for future research investigations are presented.

Economic and environmental optimization of packaging containers choice in Food Catering Supply Chain

Ronzoni, Michele
Software
;
Accorsi, Riccardo
Conceptualization
;
Guidani, Beatrice
Data Curation
;
Manzini, Riccardo
Project Administration
2022

Abstract

Disposable containers are widely employed throughout food supply chains (FSCs) to transport, sell, or store perishable products. These containers are made of several materials, like plastic and cardboard. Albeit the widespread use of such containers, not all the materials are suitable for food contact, and a barrier layer between perishable products and the container is needed. Moreover, a high percentage of waste along the FSC consists of primary and secondary packages. Food Catering Supply Chain (FCSC), made of multi-stage logistic networks, represents a challenging scenario for minimizing packaging disposal. Chosen for reducing waste, reusable plastic containers (RPCs) are gaining ground within the food supply chain network. We propose a multi-objective optimization model to improve the business as usual (BAU) of FCSC, quantifying saving in terms of cost and environmental impact due to the employment of RPCs. The model virtualizes the logistic and operational costs as well as the transportation and disposal impact of reusable and recyclable plastic containers. This paper evaluates the use of RPCs by comparing the performances of as-is and to-be scenarios derived from an industrial case study. The analyzed network comprises perishable product suppliers, RPC poolers, cross-docking facilities, customers, and collectors. The results show the reduction of environmental impacts and logistic, handling, and operational costs in the proposed FCSC topology. A new network configuration and insights for future research investigations are presented.
2022
Ronzoni, Michele; Accorsi, Riccardo; Guidani, Beatrice; Manzini, Riccardo
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/918961
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