Skip to main content

Short Food Supply Chains and Transitions to Sustainable and Resilient Food Systems

Edited by:
Professor Andrea Marescotti
, PhD, Department of Economics and Management, University of Florence, Italy
Christopher James Maughan, PhD, Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience, Coventry University, UK
Professor Erik Mathijs, MSc, PhD, Agricultural and Resource Economics, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium
Professor Giovanni Belletti, PhD, Department of Economics and Management, University of Florence, Italy
Matteo Mengoni, MSc, Department of Economics and Management, University of Florence, Italy
Professor Moya Kneafsey, PhD, Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience, Coventry University, UK

Submission Status: Open   |   Submission Deadline: 30 April 2024


Agricultural and Food Economics is calling for submissions to our Collection on Short Food Supply Chains and Transitions to Sustainable and Resilient Food Systems. This Collection aims to assemble recent research to critically evaluate the opportunities, obstacles and solutions for short food supply chains within the broad frame of transitions to sustainable and resilient food systems.

Image credits: © roibu / Fotolia

New Content ItemThis collection supports and amplifies research related to SDG 1: No Poverty, SDG 2: Zero Hunger, SDG 3: Good Health and Wellbeing, SDG 4: Quality and Education, SDG 5: Gender Equality, SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic, SDG 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure, SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities Growth, SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities, SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production, SDG 13: Climate Action, and SDG15: Life on Earth.

About the Collection

Farmers and food producers are often in a relatively weak position in the food value chain. They often lack bargaining power, face barriers to accessing markets, and struggle to achieve a fair income in return for their work. At the same time, there is growing public awareness of the environmental crises including climate change and biodiversity loss, and how these are related to food systems.  Diet-related ill-health is a major public health burden and the number of people experiencing food insecurity has increased.  Consumers increasingly want to conveniently access high quality, healthy and sustainable foods at an affordable price. Moreover, they want to know where their food comes from and how it was produced, and are often keen to support local farmers and producers when they make their purchase choices. As a result, many innovative opportunities for farmers to access markets are now being developed, often at a territorial scale and using short food supply chains as the route to market.

Research has shown that short food supply chains can foster the ‘reconnection’ of producers and consumers, lead to improved farmers’ incomes and contribute to social and environmental benefits, particularly when they enable agroecological and organic producers to access markets. However, there is still a need for more studies to address the many questions and challenges raised by attempts to shorten food supply chains.  For example, the full costs and benefits are not always well understood and efforts to ‘scale’ short food supply chains are often hampered by a range of practical, logistical and economic challenges.  Issues of justice, equity and fairness are also under-researched in relation to short food supply chains.  As such, the full potential for short food supply chains to contribute to the ‘just transition’ of food systems has not yet been realised.

The aim of this thematic collection is to assemble recent research to critically evaluate the opportunities, obstacles and solutions for short food supply chains within the broad frame of transitions to sustainable and resilient food systems. We welcome empirical and theoretical papers and case studies that cover a range of key topics including:

  • Opportunities and challenges for farmers to participate in short food supply chains.
  • The potential of sustainable public sector food procurement to be unleashed through short food supply chains.
  • The contribution of short food supply chains to local and regional development including food /gastro tourism, farm-based tourism, rural-urban synergies.
  • Shortening supply chains of processed products to hotels, restaurants and catering through vertical collaboration.
  • Short food supply chains as a tool for valorising origin products, agrobiodiversity and agroecological transitions.
  • Conceptual, methodological and empirical advances in understanding the costs and benefits, sustainability and resilience of short food supply chains.
  • The practical and technical dimensions of short food supply chains, e.g. closed loop systems, smart shared logistics, the role of digital technology.
  • The role of multi-actor collaboration and knowledge exchange in developing short food supply chains.
  • The mechanisms, policies and governance structures that enable short food supply chains to scale up or scale out.
  • The contributions of short food supply chains to alternative economies, economic fairness and equity.
  • Gender dynamics in short food supply chains.
  • The role of short food supply chains in enabling access to healthy, nutritious diets for all, including their potential contribution to realising the right to food and other human rights.
  • The intricate connections and dynamics between short food supply chains and food security.
  • The role of short food supply chains in addressing agriculture's climate-related challenges, exploring their potential to mitigate crises brought about by climatic factors.
  • The contribution of short food supply chains to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals.
  • Consumer behaviour in relation to short food supply chains.

There are currently no articles in this collection.

Submission Guidelines

Back to top

This Collection welcomes submissions of research articles and reviews. Before submitting your manuscript, please ensure you have read our submission guidelines

Articles for this Collection should be submitted via our submission system. Please select the appropriate Collection title “Short Food Supply Chains and Transitions to Sustainable and Resilient Food Systems" from the dropdown menu.

Articles will undergo the journal’s standard peer-review process and are subject to all of the journal’s standard policies. Articles will be added to the Collection as they are published.

The Guest Editors have no competing interests with the submissions which they handle through the peer-review process. The peer-review of any submissions for which the Guest Editors have competing interests is handled by another Editorial Board Member who has no competing interests.