Green products need green actor chains – The assessment of passive housing and organic food
Conference poster, 2011
Sustainable development is interpreted in many ways by business and industry as over 30 definitions of corporate
social responsibility shows, all including social, economic and environmental aspects. At the same time business units
and products supply chains become multinational and environmental concerns are rising in industry, such as energy,
climate change or waste reduction. The presented research here involves environmental aspects and business aspects in
form of product chains and the overall research question is: How do organising product chains effect the environment?
In other words: How green are product chains, especially of green products, such as passive housing or organic food.
The question is answered within a concept and methods based on an interdisciplinary approach, combining LCA
(engineering/natural science tool) and environmental management/organisation theory (social science) – Environmental
assessment of organising (EAO).
A number of qualitative pre-studies and complete quantitative case studies based on this method have been used
in close contact to industrial actors in different sectors, including the building sector, the food sector, as well as the
manufacturing sector, service sector, transport sector, and leisure.
The study of food reveals the importance of industry and consumers, especially on reducing waste. The study of
green buildings reveal that passive housing are only green product when consumer choosing eco-labeled electricity. The
ongoing study of green food chains indicates so far that the organising of short and local chains might not only reduce
transport, but also reduce waste within the chain due to the caring handling of the product.
The main conclusion of this interdisciplinary research shows that green products need green actor chains. The
studies show that including actors in LCA helps to describe these green actor chains.
organic food chain
Life cycle Assessment (LCA)