Workpackage 2: Modelling Supply Chains

Workpackage leader

Antoine Messéan
Research Unit for the Ecological Impact of Plant Production Innovations
Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique
Versailles, France


The overall objective of WP2 is to facilitate co-existence along the feed/food chains by characterising the organisational schemes of supply chain product management from the farm to the shelf space of the retailer, describing the different components of domestic and "imported" co-existence (fields, silos, transportation, processing, retailing), identifying driving - biological, societal, economic – factors, designing representative predictive models, identifying hot spot situations and testing various measures and scenarios of traceability and co-existence systems.

The specific objectives of this work package are:

  • To describe current food/feed supply chains and identify driving factors impacting quality and purity from seed purchase to end user delivery, either from accidental or intentional mixing;
  • To design descriptive/predictive models for admixture along the whole supply chains taking into account variability of processes;
  • To identify the more sensitive points and processes as well as the "hot spot" situations by assessing the feasibility of meeting various thresholds;
  • To test biological, technological, organisational mitigation measures in terms of efficiency, feasibility and costs (in connection with WP3, WP5, and WP7);
  • To assess the overall scenarios set up by WP7 in terms of efficiency, feasibility, costs and acceptability.

The general approach within WP2 will be to:

  • describe existing logistical schemes within several supply chains;
  • analyse physical flows from the field to the retailer and identify critical points and processes in terms of mixing GM/non-GM;
  • design predictive models
    • based on this representation of physical flows;
    • aiming at simulating, evaluating and comparing various measures or scenarios of organisation and their impact on the whole chain efficiency and on the costs (covered by WP3);
    • useable as a dialogue support with retailers, food/feed companies, processors and farmers.
Due to the great specificity of supply chains, Co-Extra will work on case studies and then try to determine generic results and models from these case studies. These case studies will be representative of the major processes and co-existence issues and cover both food and feed as well as fresh and processed products. Operators and stakeholders will be involved throughout the project:
  • by providing information on processes and critical points of supply chains and therefore enabling us to assess their variability;
  • by assessing the feasibility and acceptability of potential measures and scenarios for facilitating co-existence.