Brownbag: “Conceptualization of Supply Chain Continuity in the Base of the Pyramid context: The Case of Food Supply Chain”

 

 

Global food companies target base of the pyramid (BoP) markets for their growth strategies. Two key players in this context are smallholder farmers and micro-retailers in urban neighborhoods. A common issue between these actors is the risk of continuing their businesses, which in turn put the whole supply chain continuity at risk. Prior research asserts that supply chain continuity is one of the building blocks of a sustainable supply chain. This concept refers to bundle of resources that focal firms deploy into the supply chain to enhance the continuity of weaker partners. But, there is no clarity or precision on what supply chain continuity is, and how supply chain continuity is achieved. This paper analyzes the constraints of smallholder farmers and neighborhood micro-retailers to stay in business in way that allow them to reinvest, thrive, and innovate. Then, it conceptualizes what supply chain continuity is, and how supply chain continuity is constituted at the dyadic (buyer-supplier, and producer-retailer) and at the supply chain level. The main result of this paper is a theoretical framework inductively built from two nested case studies. The cases studies were performed in Ecuador in the corn supply chain, and in the food/beverage supply chain.