There is a general uncertainty about the current state and maturity of green supply chains in South Africa’s fast-moving consumer goods sector. Although some frameworks exist, there appears to be a lack both of clear measurements and of an understanding of them; and this leaves companies unable to measure themselves against a standardised scale. Determine if there is a potential for green supply chains to function in South Africa. Questions that must be answered in order to determine the involvement of companies in green supply chain management include the following: • What environmentally-sustainable activities are they busy with? • What has worked in the past? (That is, what are their success stories?) • What accreditations are they looking at? • What are they measuring themselves against? • Are they aware of green supply chains and environmental issues? The focus of the project is on green supply chains and on how companies are applying them. Specifically, the focus is on the fast-moving consumer goods sector in South Africa. The areas of focus within the supply chain will be the suppliers, packaging, producers, retailers, and transport. This paper outlines the need for a quick assessment tool to map the maturity of a company’s green supply chain operations, investigates what is green supply chain management and its current maturity in the South African FMCG sector by presenting a ‘green supply chain maturity assessment questionnaire’ as a potential answer to this need. The experiences that the researchers have gained in the development of the questionnaire are summed up, as are the strengths and weaknesses of green supply chains in South Africa. Guidelines for a green supply chain procedure are presented, and a research agenda for further development is proposed. The surveys showed that in South African green supply chains there is a definite need for green supply chain management with a specific focus that has to be placed on the sourcing processes. The case studies demonstrate how successful ‘green’ focused retailers have gone about installing ‘green’ sourcing methods. There is a general lack in the awareness, some shortcomings in the transportation departments and a focus on money instead of environment.
Thesis (B Eng. (Industrial and Systems Engineering))--University of Pretoria, 2012.