This theoretical chapter discusses the role that intermediaries may play in direct distribution, supply chains and supply networks. The first approach does not recognize benefits from striving for collaboration and avoids intermediaries' participation as much as possible. Conversely, the latter two emphasize the creation of economic and efficiency values, through the alignment of goals and resources directed by a stronger channel lead body. However, in the case of micro-producers, increasing these values is not the only motivation; lifestyle or esteem factors may be, for example, more potent drivers. The research extends multi-actor supply arrangements beyond chains and networks, by introducing the concept of supply communities. This is illustrated through a vignette of a regional food marketing umbrella group that plays an organizing role. Findings suggest intermediaries to act as triggers for collaboration. The complementary nature of the community approach suggests a framework for micro-businesses to strengthen their operations with existing traditional supply arrangements.
|Title of host publication||Global Intermediation and Logistics Service Providers|
|Editors||Laurence Saglietto, Cécile Cezanne|
|Number of pages||21|
|Publication status||Published - 18 Jan 2017|