Reducing transportation greenhouse gas emissions with collaborative distribution: A case study

Nicolas Danloup, Vahid Mirzabeiki, Hamid Allaoui, Gilles Goncalves, Denyse Julien, Carlos Mena

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this paper is to study the potential for improving sustainability performance in food supply networks by implementing collaborative distribution. Food supply chains generate a significant portion of CO2 emissions, because of the large volume of food transportation and the large number and frequency of trips made to deliver food products to retail stores, making it available to the customers. Collaboration of partners in food supply chains will lead to reducing CO2 emissions.

Such collaboration could be in the form of sharing trucks by retailers, to increase the fill rate of the vehicles and to reduce their empty running. A case study of the logistics network of a British company, distributing fruits and vegetables, is carried out. The company sends the products from a distribution centre to 27 retailers’ warehouses of 3 different companies in the UK. A simulation study is carried out to measure the reduced traveled distance for delivery of the products and the reduced amount of CO2 emissions across two different scenarios, as a result of implementing collaborative distribution.

With this approach, the total CO2 emissions are able to be reduced by at least 26 per cent.

The theoretical contribution of the paper is important both for showing the role of simulation and collaborative distribution for developing the green supply chain solutions management and their indicating to the applications to logistics and product delivery.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1049-1067
Number of pages19
JournalManagement Research Review
Issue number10
Early online date19 Oct 2015
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Sustainability
  • Collaboration
  • Simulation
  • Green supply chains


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