Review on Reverse Logistics and Closed-Loop Supply Chain

A Review of Reverse Logistics

An Upstream Construction Supply Chain Perspective

The article indicates that the field of construction is associated with large quantities of non-toxic waste dissemination into the environment. However, proper waste management can be accomplished through closed-loop supply chain implementation in the running of production processes. It is by practicing reverse logistics that wastage and depletion of natural resources, which are destructive to the environment can be achieved (Pushpamali et al., 2019). Reverse logistics is therefore a strategy to control wastage in the upstream processes.

Researchers have sensitized that reverse logistics yields economic and social benefits and environmental liveliness. It saves the costs of construction from the consumers and reduces pollution within the primary production system since materials are readily reused and recycled. The paper is focused on examining the implementation of reverse logistics in the upstream process, with comparative analysis achieved through data mining and literature review. Being that recycling is common in the construction industry, a realization of economic and environmental benefits requires the application of reverse logistics (Pushpamali et al., 2019). In the upstream process of construction, proper designs should be employed. It would ensure that policies are implemented to minimize wastage, pollution, and overconsumption of resources.

A Review of Reverse Logistics and Closed-Loop Supply Chain Management Studies Published in IJPR

A Biometric and Content Analysis

The concept of reverse logistics has been exploited as a strategy to realize profits through the recovery of used products. It entails planning, establishing, and managing the flow of resources backward during production. Reverse logistics is therefore taken as the basis of operations within the closed-loop supply chain practices, which encompasses accounting for forward and reverse products, both at the beginning and end of life. Consumers return the exhausted and faulty products to the industry for the production of suitable ones. The review was conducted through a well-planned material collection process from the International Journal of Production Research (IJPR) (Kazemi et al., 2019). Biometric and content analysis were done for both qualitative and quantitative evaluation of the insights in the field of reverse logistics and closed-loop supply chain.

The content analysis that unveiled broader scopes of Reverse Logistics and Closed-Loop Supply Chain was covered by the International Journal of Production Research papers. It is realized that inventory management and control of product returns should be well programmed. The collection of end-of-life products from consumers and channeling them back to producers is vital to diminish wastage. Besides, it can be ascertained that proper coordination leads to maximum output through closed-loop supply chain practices (Kazemi et al., 2019). As factors for progress in the future, versatility and active industrial production publications should be considered besides academic works to unveil more insights on the reality of reverse logistics implementation for economic gain.

A Literature Review on Closed-Loop Supply Chains

Modeling and optimizing the management of the supply chain is a technical process, however, crucial for high-quality products at the minimum cost possible. The surfacing of environmental and economic problems has led to the concept of closed-loop supply chain development. A closed-loop supply chain entails tasking the upstream production process with recovering returned products for production, and encompasses forward and reverse practices (Konyalıoğlu & Zafeirakopoulos, 2020). The review investigated papers on the closed-loop supply chain to define how it has developed or evolved with time from 1999 to 2017.

Diverse methods have been exploited to ensure maximum output through a closed-loop supply chain. Initially, programming of integers from 0-1 was utilized to solve the distribution problems of products being collected for remanufacturing. Currently, mathematical modeling incorporating multiple objectives is used to develop a sustainable supply chain, with benefits being realized and location or distribution challenges solved at the same time. A combination of deterministic and stochastic variables enables the modeling to capture real-life situations like the industrial production process besides academic insights. Over time, it is realized that the implementation of a closed-loop supply chain solves environmental and economic drawbacks associated with industrial production (Konyalıoğlu & Zafeirakopoulos, 2020). Various methods are exploited in the closed-loop supply chain to attain the desired objectives, and mathematical modeling is vital to enhance the chances of making it a real-life experience.

Managing a Closed-Loop Supply Chain with Process Innovation for Remanufacturing

It is realized that remanufacturing is vital for achieving sustainable future development by reducing the disposition of used products and saving energy exploited in the process of production. Considerations should, therefore, be given to the processes involved in developing new products to realize maximum gain through remanufacturing. It is necessary to put economics at the forefront to render the product cost-effective. Great interest is in the management of closed-loop supply chains together with remanufacturing (Reimann et al., 2019). The assumption in the paper is that for all new manufacturing, remanufacturing exploits very low production cost and optimizes chances for saving. It, therefore, demonstrates that remanufacturing generally requires procedural innovation to attain substantial cost reduction.

The study considered a closed-loop supply chain comprised of a manufacturer and a retailer. Either the retailer or the manufacturer utilizes end-of-use materials for remanufacturing, of which one can be cost-intensive due to collection and innovative processing to form new products. It, therefore, indicates that reduction of cost in the process of remanufacturing will not apply in all situations to produce a valuable result. Remanufacturing by the manufacturer should avoid all options that do not allow for variable cost reduction to realize a profit at the end of production. Retailers, on the other hand, would capitalize on remanufacturing to compete for the market with the new product (Reimann et al., 2019). Therefore, the management of closed-loop supply chain and innovation requires the manufacturer’s efforts to make the process economical.

Systematic Literature Review on the Ways of Measuring of the Reverse Logistics Performance

Reverse logistics is instrumental in enhancing the competitiveness of a company in the market. However, realizing its significance in the process of production, a system of monitoring it and evaluating performance both on financial and non-financial determinants has to be set in place. By recovering products and delivering them back to the company at the time when consumers want to dispose of, re-sell or reuse them, maximum profit is realized through further processing and selling (Fernandes et al., 2018). Moreover, chances of contamination are diminished leading to good environmental health and social well-being. In the review, avenues of measuring the performance of reverse logistics to the expected benefits are done.

It is indicated that the high performance of reverse logistics in the economic dimension is directly linked to customers. The rate of their consumption and accessibility for recovery determine the success of reverse logistics in promoting the company’s competitiveness and diminishing chances of environmental pollution. Generating good quality or high value of customers normally requires maximizing the internal processes of the company. The government must be satisfied with the rate of energy consumption during production as well as environmental well-being. As an indicator of innovation, the employees and profit realization must be satisfactory (Fernandes et al., 2018). Therefore, reverse logistics should be instrumental in promoting development whenever a company implements its practices in the process of production.

Logistics Management

New Trends in the Reverse Logistics

The Executive Council of Reverse Logistics defines it as “a movement of materials from a typical final consumption in the opposite direction to regain value or to dispose of wastes”. Economically, it is viewed as a strategic process of establishing and managing raw materials, inventory being processed, finished products, and consumption requirements of the customers. The activities within reverse logistics are controlling production, sorting, and keeping of materials, recovery of the consumed assets, and shipment of goods (Antonyová et al., 2016). All these are executed to ensure customer satisfaction, and enhance economic and environmental suitability.

Reverse logistics is concerned with waste management in which a designed system has to be developed to identify main sources of wastes, analyze their economic impacts, and discover their suitability for recycling. Consequently, an appropriate procedure can be developed which might be recycling, remanufacturing, supply control, and transportation. The unity of society and technology has led to new trends for operating reverse logistics which include research on materials and suitability of recycling, reuse, and diversification for the development of new products. Moreover, the economic impact of reverse logistics is realized in the model utilized in the estimation of cost variables. It has led to stochastic and deterministic approaches in the supply chain using algorithmic modeling. However, diverse models exist that apply to different companies in ensuring maximum income generation (Antonyová et al., 2016). Thus, model specification and the anticipated benefits while operating small-scale firms with reverse logistics is the central point to determine economic impacts. It, therefore, form the hottest topic for future research.

Specifics of Closed-Loop Supply Chain Management in the Food Sector

Sustainable development is one of the topics addressed in the business world. It draws attention to social responsibility and economic growth. Thus, consistency in the supply chain management should take into consideration reverse logistics, which incorporates re-utilization of materials for production as well as minimizing wastage and environmental contamination. The paper discussed the major point of concern in Closed-Loop Supply Chain in the food industry since it is associated with high wastage dissemination following a short life span of raw materials and products on the shelves (Szmelter, 2016). Thus, environmental pollution is highly associated with food production, as well as, inconsistency in the marketing process.

Closed-Loop Supply Chain being concerned with waste management should ensure that products be removed from the seller’s offer to control their dissemination. It, therefore, call attention to the management of the sequences in the production of foods. Damaged products, as well as poorly packed foodstuff, should not be distributed to the market for consumption. Therefore, it implies that thorough programs should be implemented in the closed-loop supply chain management in the food industry (Szmelter, 2016). It is, therefore, necessary to implement a separate research area dealing with Closed-Loop Supply Chain Management in the food industry.

A Review of Reverse Logistics and Closed-Loop Supply Chains

A Journal of Cleaner Production Focus

The forward supply chain deals with finishing the product for consumption but has no concern with the end of a product’s life. On the other hand, the reverse supply chain entails utilizing goods from their point of disposal due to exhaustion for further production. However, a closed supply chain encompasses both forward and reverse supply chains’ attributes. Through review papers, it is easy to determine the trend in reverse logistics and closed-loop supply chain (Govindan & Soleimani, 2017). The major subjects of concern are the paper are the approaches used in modeling supply chains, methods employed in solving problems, and variables considered in decision making.

Through a comprehensive literature review, it has been determined that decisions made within the closed-loop supply chain undergo three levels of decision making. Most of the papers published in the Journal of Cleaner Production involve real-life analysis allowing for delivery of contents with the practicality of the insights in reverse logistics and closed-loop supply chain. From the papers within the journal, more intense research is necessary for the field of modeling that involves algorithmic optimization of output after considering the variable in the investment (Govindan & Soleimani, 2017). Saving for the strategic variables, all other determinants, and indicators of closed-loop supply chain and reverse logistics in enhancing economic success should be considered in the process of decision making.

Reverse Logistics for Return Management in Retail

A Systematic Literature Review from 2007 to 2016

Reverse logistics is a valuable tool in the management of businesses. The retail sector holds a vital responsibility in the supply chain as it distributes products to customers and maintains social interactions between them and producers. Determination of the effectiveness of reverse logistics in the management of returns is therefore vital, as carried out in the paper. From the concept of the paper, reverse logistics is still a developing sector in supply chain management, hence further research should be considered for its exploitation in return control. However, the method is predicted to be useful in enhancing competitiveness by promoting social cohesion and economic suitability of products as pricing is monitored even to the retail level (Dias et al., 2019). Further research should be invested to help in drawing more data on the suitability of reverse logistics in returns monitory and management of retail sectors during marketing.

Performance Evaluation of Reverse Logistics

Opportunities for Future Research

Multiples of changes have been recorded in many organizations all the world for technological advancements and vast knowledge in business fields. Performance is, therefore, a factor considered for success in the competitive economic fields. Various indicators are used to determine success thorough evaluation of performance. Reverse logistics being a heavily exploited area in running business operations, determining its success through performance evaluation is necessary, and the theme in the paper. The performance of business run with reverse logistics should be evaluated and proper management strategies should be implemented to promote success (Voigt et al., 2019). Theoretical frameworks should be developed to help in determining the standards of performance of different businesses in which reverse logistics is exploited for operations management. By investing to obtain more insight into reverse logistics and performance of businesses, easy management can be achieved.


Antonyová, A., Antony, P. & Soewito, B. (2016). Logistics management: New trends in the reverse logistics. Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 710(1), 1-10. Web.

Dias, K. T., Braga Jr., S. S., Silva, D. & Satolo, E. G. (2019). Reverse logistics for return management in retail: A systematic literature review from 2007 to 2016. New Global Perspectives on Industrial Engineering, 5, 145-153. Web.

Fernandes, S. M., Taboada, C. M., Bornia, A. C., Trierweiller, A. C., Maria da Silva, S. & Sá Freire, P. (2018). Systematic literature review on the ways of measuring the of reverse logistics performance. Gestao and Producao, 175-190. Web.

Govindan, K. & Soleimani, H. (2017). A review of reverse logistics and closed loop supply chains: A Journal of cleaner production focus. Journal of Cleaner Production, 142, 371-384. Web.

Kazemi, N., Modak, N. M. & Govindan, K. (2019). A review of reverse logistics and closed loop supply chain management studies published in IJPR: A bibliometric and content analysis. International Journal of Production Research, 57(15), 4937-4960. Web.

Konyalıoğlu, A. K. & Zafeirakopoulos, I. B. (2020). A literature review on closed loop supply chains. International Symposium for Production Research 2019, 547-556. Web.

Pushpamali, N. N., Agdas, D. & Rose, T. M. (2019). A review of reverse logistics: An upstream construction supply chain perspective. Sustainability, 11, 1-14. Web.

Reimann, M., Xiong, Y. & Zhou, Y. (2019). Managing a closed-loop supply chain with process innovation for remanufacturing. European Journal of Operational Research, 276, 510-518. Web.

Szmelter, A. (2016). Specifics of closed loop supply chain management in the food sector. Journal of Reverse Logistics, 2, 14-19.

Voigt, D., Filho, N. C., Macedo, M. A., Braga, T. G. & Garbin da Rocha, R. U. (2019). Performance evaluation of reverse logistics: Opportunities for future research. Sustainability, 11, 1-17. Web.

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