Two important strands of research within the literature on Environmental Operations Management (EOM) relate to environmental approach and performance. Often in this research the links between environmental approach, environmental performance and EOM are considered separately with little consideration given to the interrelationships between them. This study develops and tests a theoretical framework that combines these two strands to explore how UK food manufacturers approach EOM. The framework considers the relationships between an environmentally pro-active strategic orientation, EOM and environmental and cost performance. A cross-sectional survey was developed to collect data from a sample of 1200 food manufacturing firms located within the UK. Responses were sought from production and operations managers who are knowledgeable about the environmental operations practices within their firms. A total of 149 complete and useable responses were obtained. The reliability and validity of the scales used in the survey were tested using exploratory factor analysis, prior to the testing of the hypotheses underpinning the theoretical framework using hierarchical regression analysis. Our results generate support for a link between environmental proactivity, environmental practices and performance, consistent with the natural resource-based view (NRBV) and a number of studies in the extant literature. In considering environmental proactivity as a standalone concept that influences the implementation of environmental practices outlined in the NRBV, our study generates some novel insights into these links. Further our results provide some interesting insights for managers within the food industry who can identify the potential benefits of certain practices for performance within this unique context.
- environmental management