RED meat industry supply chain stakeholders from producers to exporters are being asked to contribute to a university survey designed to better understand the value of quality information throughout the Australian red meat supply chain.
“In the red meat supply chain, we have succeeded in generating and distributing large amounts of information about meat quality,” explained University of New England’s Professor Derek Baker.
“With eating quality based information leading the way, MSA is a good example, but it’s not the only one. We can also look at genomics, animal health and other performance measures, measures of specialised carcase and meat quality attributes, and the tracking of product provenance,” Prof Baker said.
“All these are relevant to product quality, and efforts to deliver it to the consumer.”
However, much less was known about the value of quality information to the people working in the supply chain: cattle breeders, lotfeeders, meat processors and retailers.
UNE’s research project is the first to place a value on product quality information, and to compare that value at the different levels across the supply. It will attempt to examine how, and if, meat quality information is being shared along the chain. The project’s representation of information use in the red meat supply chain is presented in the (somewhat busy) diagram below. Click on image for a larger view.
It shows how information providers and users interact with respect to information on meat product and animal attributes, and how information value and the costs provide incentives for change and relate to the performance of firms.
The research framework
The research project involves a voluntary on-line questionnaire, being completed by red meat supply chain participants all over Australia. The questionnaire:
- involves around 40 short multiple choice questions which are answered anonymously on-line
- takes about 15 minutes to complete
- concerns the measurement, sharing and use of product quality, and the value placed on the information
- requires some thinking about what meat quality information is worth
- addresses all actors in the red meat supply chain and all types of commercial entity – big and small; urban and rural
- is a vital step in future planning for competitive supply chain design and management in the Australian red meat industry.
The data being collected for this research will not be used in a way that identifies any survey respondent, Prof Baker said, nor are there no questions of a personal or financially sensitive nature.