Applying the Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive within the service sector – An overview of prepardness in the Swedish Quick Sercice Restaurant Sector

Last changed: 24 May 2023
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Jonathan Elliott, Sustainable Food Systems - Master's programme


This thesis project looked at the readiness of the fast-food sector in Sweden for the application of a new EU law, the Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive (CSDDD). Agriculture and food systems play a significant role in the climate crisis, with the global food system contributing nearly 1/3rd of global greenhouse gas emissions, fast-food chains play a significant role in this. This thesis examined how prepared fast-food chains are in Sweden for the application of the CSDDD which sets sustainability and due diligence targets in the environmental and human rights fields. The aim of this thesis was to assess the challenges of meeting the CSDDD by identifying the sustainability models and strategies of the three biggest fast-food chains in Sweden, McDonald's, Max Hamburgers and Burger King. It also looked at how power was distributed throughout the food system, with one of the core ideas of the CSDDD being that it is applicable not only to a business’s own operation, but also to those of their supply chain. This thesis conducted a case study that examined several codes of conduct, sustainability reports and carried out interviews with workers throughout the food system. The results show that the two biggest players in the fast-food industry are well placed to meet the requirements of the CSDDD, however, one actor has significant work to do to meet the standards required. They also showed that power is concentrated by both the wholesalers and fast-food restaurants within the supply chain.


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