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Corporate and consumer social responsibility in the food supply chain

Louise Manning (Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester, UK)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Article publication date: 18 January 2013




The purpose is to analyse the interaction between corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategies and consumer social responsibility (CNSR) and then contribute to theory‐building by developing an interaction model.


The research included a literature review and the development of a CSR/CNSR interaction model for the food supply chain.


CSR is an organo‐centric response to a series of supply chain drivers, which in a competitive market promotes corporate/product differentiation and more effective use of resources. CSR is however of limited value to the organisation if there is a lack of, or a change in, consumer engagement. Recent economic drivers have influenced CNSR behaviour with the consumerism component rather than the caring component of CNSR playing a lead role. However, this is not the case with all food products and CNSR can be a solo, product‐centric purchasing decision within the shopping basket. Organisations need to recognise that their CSR activities must remain congruent with CNSR in order that they maintain or improve market share and customer loyalty.


This research is of academic value and of value to policy makers and practitioners in the food supply chain. The results show that organisations need to consider the influence of the nature of consumer social responsibility associated with their products and services in the development and refinement of CSR strategies.



Manning, L. (2013), "Corporate and consumer social responsibility in the food supply chain", British Food Journal, Vol. 115 No. 1, pp. 9-29.



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Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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