Corporate Social Responsibility Programs in Small and Medium Enterprises – Food Industry in Taiwan

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In Taiwan, after numerous cases of food safety and environmental pollution scandals, corporate social responsibility (CSR) has become a high concern of the public. Although it appeared that CSR had mostly been implemented only by large enterprises in Taiwan, in fact, small and medium enterprises can also conduct their CSR programs. Moreover, food is an essential part of our daily life that has a fundamental impact on our health; therefore, the food industry specifically should pay extremely high regard to their social responsibility. This research applied the multiple-case-study approach and explored the above-mentioned CSR issues in three outstanding Taiwanese SMEs in the food industry. Observations, semi-structured interviews, and other triangulation techniques were conducted to support the credibility of the research. The findings of the research are as follows. First, the definition of CSR is unclear among the SMEs in Taiwan. In this research, for some SMEs, CSR is a sort of specific activities; some even considered CSR is only for the large companies and are mandated by the government. Second, the will of the top management forms the company’s vision and mission and also influences the organizational culture. With a strong connection to the organizational culture, employees in the case companies possess high organizational identification which leads them to conduct CSR programs. Third, when implementing CSR program, the company’s lack of resources and the governmental regulations can be the challeng; while on the positive side, the flexibility to solve problemses and the deep business expertise are the strength of SMEs and can be the opportunities. Lastly, positive outcomes for SMEs from the CSR program are increased customer loyalty, better performance in the market, diversified business partners, and the sense of achievement from the employees.



none, corporate social responsibility, small and medium enterprise, the food industry in Taiwan