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The impact of digital traceability on sustainability performance: investigating the roles of sustainability-oriented innovation and supply chain learning

Xiongyong Zhou (School of Economics and Management, Fuzhou University, Fuzhou, China and Antai College of Economics and Management, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China)
Haiyan Lu (Business School, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK)
Sachin Kumar Mangla (Plymouth University, Plymouth, UK and Jindal Global Business School, OP Jindal Global University, Sonipat, India)

Supply Chain Management

ISSN: 1359-8546

Article publication date: 27 February 2024

Issue publication date: 31 May 2024

586

Abstract

Purpose

Food sustainability is a world-acknowledged issue that requires urgent integrated solutions at multi-levels. This study aims to explore how food firms can improve their sustainability performance through digital traceability practices, considering the mediating effect of sustainability-oriented innovation (SOI) and the moderating effect of supply chain learning (SCL) for the food supply chain therein.

Design/methodology/approach

Hierarchical regression with a moderated mediation model is used to test the proposed hypotheses with a sample of 359 food firms from four provinces in China.

Findings

Digital traceability has a significant positive impact on the three pillars of sustainability performances among food firms. SOI (product innovation, process innovation and organisational innovation) mediates the relationship between digital traceability and sustainability performance. SCL plays moderating roles in the linkage between digital traceability and both product and process innovation, respectively.

Originality/value

This paper contributes as one of the first studies to develop digital traceability practices and their sustainability-related improvements for Chinese food firms; it extends studies on supply chain traceability to a typical emerging market. This finding can support food sustainability practice in terms of where and how to invest in sustainability innovation and how to improve economic, environmental and social performance.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

For the purpose of open access, the author has applied a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence to any Author Accepted Manuscript version arising from this submission.

Funding: Major Project of Social Science Research Base in Fujian Province (No. FJ2023JDZ020).

Citation

Zhou, X., Lu, H. and Kumar Mangla, S. (2024), "The impact of digital traceability on sustainability performance: investigating the roles of sustainability-oriented innovation and supply chain learning", Supply Chain Management, Vol. 29 No. 3, pp. 497-522. https://doi.org/10.1108/SCM-01-2023-0047

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2024, Emerald Publishing Limited

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