The blockchain technology has been tested in different industries but financial institutions have proven to be the most successful in implementing the technology. However, other industries have also shown great promise including, entertainment, health, education and now, food supply. Ten of the world’s biggest companies have joined to create the world’s first food supply chain. The supply chain will make it easy to track foodstuff from the farm to the grocery store using a blockchain-based system. Food supply records have largely been nonexistent and the little record kept by companies is kept in paper form. The digital supply chain will make it easy to identify the origin of food, especially in situations when it goes bad.
The Food Trust Group Consortium
The ten companies that include Walmart Inc., Nestle and Tyson Foods have now formed a consortium called the Food Trust Group. The consortium has run tests for a year and they believe the results are impressive enough to launch the platform on a global scale. The supply chain aims at ensuring that recalls are made fast and more efficiently. This will not only reduce the risk for consumers but will also raise the standard for the food industry. Regulators, who in the past have had a hard time tracking down suppliers, will also be able to track down on food suppliers who occasionally supply bad food through the chain.
The vice president of food safety at Walmart, Frank Yiannas, says;
You’re capturing real-time data at every point, on every single food product,
He equates the supply chain to FedEx’s tracking service which gives real-time data, conveniently showing the status of your package.
The ten companies, although competitors, will reportedly collaborate on this project. The consortium will be working together for the sole reason of earning the trust of consumers. The supply chain will allow farmers, suppliers, and others to enter data on the blockchain using mobile apps rather than paper. With the platform expected to go global, the Food Trust group admits that it will be slow and will take a long time to get adopted. However, once the ball starts rolling, it will be used more than the traditional data entry. Nestle, which works with over 2,000 brands, suppliers and distributors is already working with the group, building tools to integrate the system.
Walmart has been on the forefront in the development of blockchain technology having been awarded three blockchain based patents. The most recent patent the company has won is for a blockchain-based health care records system. This system would help first responders to pull up patient records making them more suitable to help the patients during a medical emergency. The record will additionally be used in the hospitals the patient ends up in.
The retail giant has shown commitment to blockchain technology over the years. It sees great promise in the technology and has promised to continue its research and development into the industry.
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