Towards a Circular Economy in Australian Agri‐Food Industry: An Application of Input‐Output Oriented Approaches for Analyzing Resource Efficiency and Competitiveness Potential

11 Pages Posted: 25 Oct 2016

See all articles by Murilo Pagotto

Murilo Pagotto

University of Queensland

Anthony Halog

University of Queensland

Date Written: October 2016

Abstract

The food industry in Australia (agriculture and manufacturing) plays a fundamental role in contributing to socioeconomic sectors nationally. However, alongside the benefits, the industry also produces environmental burdens associated with the production of food. Sectorally, agriculture is the largest consumer of water. Additionally, land degradation, greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption, and waste generation are considered the main environmental impacts caused by the industry. The research project aims to evaluate the eco‐efficiency performance of various subsectors in the Australian agri‐food systems through the use of input‐ output-oriented approaches of data envelopment analysis and material flow analysis. This helps in establishing environmental and economic indicators for the industry. The results have shown inefficiencies during the life cycle of food production in Australia. Following the principles of industrial ecology, the study recommends the implementation of sustainable processes to increase efficiency, diminish undesirable outputs, and decrease the use of nonrenewable inputs within the production cycle. Broadly, the research outcomes are useful to inform decision makers about the advantages of moving from a traditional linear system to a circular production system, where a sustainable and efficient circular economy could be created in the Australian food industry.

Keywords: circular economy, data envelopment analysis (DEA), food industry, input‐output analysis (IOA), material flow analysis (MFA), resource efficiency

Suggested Citation

Pagotto, Murilo and Halog, Anthony, Towards a Circular Economy in Australian Agri‐Food Industry: An Application of Input‐Output Oriented Approaches for Analyzing Resource Efficiency and Competitiveness Potential (October 2016). Journal of Industrial Ecology, Vol. 20, Issue 5, pp. 1176-1186, 2016, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2857374 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jiec.12373

Murilo Pagotto (Contact Author)

University of Queensland

St Lucia
Brisbane, Queensland 4072
Australia

Anthony Halog

University of Queensland ( email )

St Lucia
Brisbane, Queensland 4072
Australia

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