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Data-driven capabilities, supply chain integration and competitive performance: Evidence from the food and beverages industry in Pakistan

Muhammad Irfan (Faculty of Management and Economics, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian, China) (University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan)
Mingzheng Wang (School of Management, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Article publication date: 23 September 2019

Issue publication date: 23 October 2019




The purpose of this paper is to analyze the effects of data-driven capabilities on supply chain integration (SCI) and competitive performance of firms in the food and beverages (F & B) industry in Pakistan.


The authors adopt the structural equation modeling approach to test the proposed hypotheses using AMOS 23. Survey data were collected from 240 firms in the F & B industry in Pakistan.


The results revealed that SCI (i.e. internal integration (II) and external integration (EI)) significantly mediates the effect of data-driven capabilities (i.e. flexible information technology resources and data assimilation) on a firm’s competitive performance. In addition to the direct effects, II also has an indirect effect on competitive performance through EI.

Practical implications

The study has several implications for managers in the context of big data application in food supply chain management (FSCM) in a developing country context. The study posits that firms can achieve excellence in performance by governing data-driven supply chain operations. The study also has implications for distributors and importers in the F & B industry. The cloud-based sharing of data can improve the operational performance of channel members while reducing their overall cost of operations. In practice, food franchises largely get the advantage of shared resources of their suppliers in managing orders, payments, inventory and after-sales services.


The study is novel and deepens the understanding about the use of big data in FSCM keeping in view the industry trends and stakeholder’s priorities in a developing country context.



This research is partly supported by the NSFC under Grants 71931009 and 71671023, in part by the Foundation for Innovative Research Groups of NSFC under Grant 71421001 and by the development Foundation of teaching and scientific research for teachers of Liberal Arts in Zhejiang University. The authors would like to thank the Editor-in-Chief, Area Editor and anonymous reviewers for their honest, helpful and constructive comments.


Irfan, M. and Wang, M. (2019), "Data-driven capabilities, supply chain integration and competitive performance: Evidence from the food and beverages industry in Pakistan", British Food Journal, Vol. 121 No. 11, pp. 2708-2729.



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