The FEWSION Supply Chain and Infrastructure Model

supply chain definition
infrastructure definition

Food, Energy and Water (FEW) supply chains are supported by infrastructure. FEW commodities tend to be massive and voluminous, and therefore require substantial infrastructure. Inflow/Outflow or Import/Export are implied in every step of the supply chain. At each step in the supply chain there is a point of origin of the flow, a point of destination for the flow, a route traveled by the flow, and a mode of transportation for the commodity flow. The FEWSION team has developed a standard supply chain and infrastructure model to help us communicate about supply chains, explained and diagrammed below.

Seven FEWSION Supply Chain Model Steps:

  1. Extraction (from the environment, at the source, primary industry only): E
  2. Production (manufacturing, processing, value-add, business to business): P
  3. Storage (mass stockpiling, hubs, reserves): S
  4. Distribution (transportation, warehousing, last mile distribution): D
  5. Retail (last mile delivery): R
  6. Consumption (by human end users, not companies or producers): C
  7. Waste (from all sources, both producers and consumers, including recycling and reuse): W

FEWSION Supply Chain Model Diagrams

What follows is a graphical summary of commodities, supply chains, and infrastructures for each of the major components of the FEW infrastructure and supply chain.

Generalized Supply Chain diagram

Figure 10.1: The FEWSION general supply chain model is shown above that shows the different lifecycle stages of a produce and its components. First, a product is extracted (E) from raw materials, where it is then transformed through a production step (P), moves through Storage (S) and Distribution (D), after which it is eventually brought to market (R), consumed (C), and discarded (W). Not every commodity contains all these steps, sometimes just an individual link, e.g., P -> S, but all commodities go through a similar 7-stage process of varying degrees of complexity. Reproduced with permission of the authors.


Ruddell, B.L., H. Gao, O. Pala, R. Rushforth, and J. Sabo, Figure 10.1 (general supply chain) from Chapter 10; Infrastructure, in P. Saundry and B.L. Ruddell (eds.), The Food Energy Water Nexus, Springer, 2019 (in press). Used with permission of the authors; all rights reserved.

Supply Chain diagram for Food - Agriculture, Meat, Fish, and Grains

Figure 10.2: The supply chain and infrastructure for food; agricultural, cereal grain, meat, poultry, and seafood products. Reproduced with permission of the authors.


Ruddell, B.L., H. Gao, O. Pala, R. Rushforth, and J. Sabo, Figure 10.2 (food and agriculture supply chain) from Chapter 10; Infrastructure, in P. Saundry and B.L. Ruddell (eds.), The Food Energy Water Nexus, Springer, 2019 (in press). Used with permission of the authors; all rights reserved.

Supply Chain diagram - Energy (Coal) and Mined Products

Figure 10.3: The supply chain and infrastructure for energy (coal) and mined products. Reproduced with permission of the authors.


Ruddell, B.L., H. Gao, O. Pala, R. Rushforth, and J. Sabo, Figure 10.3 (coal and mining supply chain) from Chapter 10; Infrastructure, in P. Saundry and B.L. Ruddell (eds.), The Food Energy Water Nexus, Springer, 2019 (in press). Used with permission of the authors; all rights reserved.

Supply Chain diagram - Natural Gas

Figure 10.4: Supply chain and infrastructure used for natural gas. Reproduced with permission of the authors.


Ruddell, B.L., H. Gao, O. Pala, R. Rushforth, and J. Sabo, Figure 10.4 (natural gas supply chain) from Chapter 10; Infrastructure, in P. Saundry and B.L. Ruddell (eds.), The Food Energy Water Nexus, Springer, 2019 (in press). Used with permission of the authors; all rights reserved.

Supply Chain diagram - Petroleum-Derived Liquid Fuels

Figure 10.5: The infrastructure and supply chain for petroleum-derived liquid fuels such as fuel oil, gasoline, kerosene, diesel, and crude oil.


Ruddell, B.L., H. Gao, O. Pala, R. Rushforth, and J. Sabo, Figure 10.5 (fuel supply chain) from Chapter 10; Infrastructure, in P. Saundry and B.L. Ruddell (eds.), The Food Energy Water Nexus, Springer, 2019 (in press). Used with permission of the authors; all rights reserved.

Supply Chain diagram - Electrical Power

Figure 10.6: The supply chain and infrastructure for electrical power. Reproduced with permission of the authors.


Ruddell, B.L., H. Gao, O. Pala, R. Rushforth, and J. Sabo, Figure 10.6 (electrical supply chain) from Chapter 10; Infrastructure, in P. Saundry and B.L. Ruddell (eds.), The Food Energy Water Nexus, Springer, 2019 (in press). Used with permission of the authors; all rights reserved.

Supply Chain diagram - Water

Figure 10.7: Supply chain and infrastructure for water, including raw, potable, and wastewater. Reproduced with permission of the authors.


Ruddell, B.L., H. Gao, O. Pala, R. Rushforth, and J. Sabo, Figure 10.7 (water supply chain) from Chapter 10; Infrastructure, in P. Saundry and B.L. Ruddell (eds.), The Food Energy Water Nexus, Springer, 2019 (in press). Used with permission of the authors; all rights reserved.

Excerpt from: Saundry, P. and Ruddell, B.L. (eds.). (2020). The Food-Energy-Water Nexus. (AESS Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies and Sciences Series). Springer, 978-3-030-29913-2. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-29914-9