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|Food integrated management systems: dairy industry insights
Integrated management system
|International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management
|Purpose The purpose of this paper is to study the management systems integration from both sector and size perspectives. Design/methodology/approach Extant literature is reviewed focussing on food-related management topics. A single case is used to delve into the understanding of integrated management systems (IMSs) using the contingency approach. Data are drawn from documents and archives, on-site observations and by interviewing employees of all hierarchy levels. Findings This case shows how size and sector-related constraints may condition integration in terms of IMS scope, strategy, level, audits, resources, motives, benefits and difficulties. Traceability is identified as an integration “catalyst” for multiple MSs in food companies. It is further discussed, how an environmental management system would be embedded within the existing integrated structure. Research limitations/implications Conclusions bring to light the sustained business leverage provided by food IMSs. Thus, food industry managers are driven to streamline the quality, food safety and environmental processes following an IMS approach. Future research on multiple cases of different size would reflect a wider IMS sector-specific perspective. Research on other sectors is expected to provide different particular aspects of integration, as well. Originality/value To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this is the first in-depth study on the adoption of an integrated generic and sector-specific MS from the contingency perspective. The case visualizes the contribution of integration when addressing the critical food safety and quality operations and the significant environmental aspects.
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|Department of Business Administration
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