Challenges and experiences

Harmen Hofstra*, Tim Hogg, Dietrich Knorr, Henry Jäger, Björn Surowsky, Karin Östergren, David Barling, John Erik Hermansen, Niels Halberg, Ulf Sonesson, Donna Simpson, Katarina Lorentzon, Lizzie Melby Jespersen, George Chryssochoidis, Olga Kehagia, Daniel Martini, Martin Kunisch

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


In the identification of transparency challenges evolving from a discrepancy between needs, state-of-the-art, and experiences that will be discussed, the Strategic Research Agenda (SRA) has utilized a broad range of approaches, including literature analysis, best practice analysis, chain analysis, work group discussions, expert discussions, surveys, web consultations, and simulation studies to reach results that serve the objectives.In this chapter, the focus is on the layer approach, the integrated view follows thereafter. The layer approach distinguishes between. a.upper levels linked to the recipients of transparency andb.lower levels linked to the actors in the food value chain and their production and distribution processes.The different layers identify different communication needs. The lowest level provides the ". infrastructure" for data communication. It is closely related to information technology and the identification of the path that a product takes from production to consumption. This is linked to the tracking and tracing functionality which makes it feasible to communicate additional information as "backpack" on the tracking and tracing information base.The next layer serves the collection of information about the various domains (food safety, food quality, chain integrity) of interest. This layer represents the classical information collection and communication approach. The third layer involves the transformation of information into signals or further to simple-to-understand messages like "this food is safe" which serve the transparency needs of the various stakeholders (consumers, enterprises, and policy) depending on the situation they are in (scenario).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTransparency for sustainability in the food chain
Subtitle of host publicationchallenges and research needs EFFoST critical reviews #2
EditorsGerhard Schiefer, Jivka Deiters
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages45
ISBN (Print)9780124171954
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Envrionmental aspects
  • Ethical aspects
  • Food chain
  • Food chain complexity
  • Food processing
  • Food quality
  • Information flow
  • Social aspects
  • Specifications
  • Transparency


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