Resilience and Digitalization in Short Food Supply Chains: A Case Study Approach

Rosario Michel-Villarreal, Eliseo Vilalta Perdomo, Maurizio Canavari*, Martin Hingley

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The interest in short food supply chains (SFSCs) has grown significantly in the last decade, notably in respect of their potential role to achieve more sustainable food chains. However, a major barrier to achieving sustainable supply chains is the uncertainty associated with supply chain activities. Therefore, this paper aims to explore the different resilience capabilities that SFSCs possess and the potential role of digital technologies as enablers of SFSCs’ resilience. Using a case study research approach, semi-structured interviews were conducted in two SFSCs in Mexico. Collected data were analyzed using thematic analysis. Findings suggest that SFSCs possess the supply chain resilience (SC resilience) capabilities investigated here, namely flexibility, redundancy, collaboration, visibility and agility. A key finding is the importance of low-cost digital technologies (including freeware and social media) that can support flexibility, collaboration, visibility and agility. These findings raise important implications for SFSCs actors exploring opportunities to improve their collective resilience. This study expands the current literature by proposing a conceptual framework that summarizes a wide variety of strategies that support SC resilience capabilities in the context of SFSCs.
Original languageEnglish
Article number5913
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 24 May 2021

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© 2021 by the authors.
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  • alternative food networks
  • resilient agri-food chains
  • digital transformation
  • local food systems


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