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Supply chain management is one of the most significant strategic challenges currently facing the Irish grocery sector. The UK grocery market with its emphasis on composite deliveries via regional distribution centres is extremely sophisticated; the Irish grocery sector, however, is in the embryonic stage of implementing central distribution. The potential to develop innovative supply chain systems is mediated by both national logistic-related variables and company characteristics. In addition to competitor activity and market forces, drivers and inhibitors such as economic growth, consumer preferences, the regulatory environment and physical and technological infrastructure influence the evolution of supply chain systems. This paper presents a profile of the Irish grocery market and a framework within which to analyse the facilitators and inhibitors of supply chain innovation based on international trends mediated by national characteristics.
Keegan, J., O'Callaghan, E., Wilcox, M.: Facilitators and inhibitors of supply chain innovation-prospects for supply chain managment in the Irish grocery sector. Irish Marketing Review, Vol. 14, no. 2, 2001, pp.26-38.