Foodchain: how blockchain conquers the real world

Foodchain: how blockchain conquers the real world

A lot of food giants explore how to apply blockchain technology to their food supply chains.

Some people use blockchain just as a PR tool or some sort of fashion statement showing that they’re keeping up with the hottest trends in technology, whereas others actually utilize the developments taking place with this technology. But is it really necessary for the food industry? What would they even use it for? Let's try to figure it out.

Real Blockchain

Retail and food giants, such as Unilever, Nestlé, Dole, and Coca-Cola, are aiming to use blockchain to maintain secure digital records and improve the traceability of their foodstuffs.

These companies see distributed ledger technology as an opportunity to revamp their data management processes across a complex network that includes farmers, brokers, distributors, processors, retailers, regulators, and consumers.

Walmart has already run two blockchain experiments in partnership with IBM. One involved tracking Chinese pork with the other involving tracking Mexican mangoes.

For these trials, Walmart used Hyperledger Fabric, a blockchain originally built by IBM and now housed under the Linux Foundation’s Hyperledger group. This is the preferred blockchain of IBM, which has been marshaling clients to try the tech across industries as varied as private equity, banking, government, and healthcare.

Those discussions proved to be fruitful. The industry group includes members such as Kroger, McCormick &Company, McLane Company, Driscoll’s, Tyson Foods, and Golden State Foods.

Coca-Cola is one of the latest companies to announce that they too are going to utilize blockchain technology. However, the way they are planning to use it is kind of surprising. They are looking to implement blockchain technology in an effort to fight forced labor, and have already teamed up with the U.S State Department and a trio of crypto organizations (Bitfury Group, Blockchain Trust Accelerator, and Emercoin) to launch a pilot project.

Advantages for consumers

The usage of blockchain in retail can make a real difference for consumers. By simply scanning a QR-code with a smartphone, customers can learn important information such as data about the animals’ birth, use of antibiotics or vaccinations and the location where the livestock was raised, as well as to make sure that the product is not fraudulent. This will also challenge food producers to provide food at a much higher quality.

One more potential benefit: blockchain brings supply chain transparency to an all-new level and empowers the entire chain to be more responsive to any food safety disasters.

Blockchain & PR

This past weekend, the Internet exploded with the news that Starbucks began to accept payment in crypto.

Starbucks, along with other companies, is a participant in the Bakkt project, but participation in a blockchain-related project does not necessarily imply that the company has now decided to start accepting Bitcoins to pay for your soy pumpkin spice latte. Might this be a well-thought-out PR-move on Starbucks’ side so everyone would start talking about them? Who knows. But one thing’s for sure: up to today, they were in the headlines.

And Starbucks is not the only one in the headlines. McDonald's announced that it intends to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Big Mac by doing something a bit different. They announced their plans to release its own “MacCoin”. MacCoins are shiny, physical souvenir coins that will be given out when people buy Big Macs starting August 2. From August 3 onward, consumers can trade in these coins for Big Macs.  Basically, it’s a nice little souvenir that’ll get you a free burger whenever you want. Even though this isn’t a cryptocurrency, we can see how this multi-billion dollar corporation’s marketing ploy uses public knowledge of cryptocurrencies to their advantage as a way to try to stay on the edge and keep its marketing relevant.

Instead of a conclusion

Food giants like the idea of simplifying their supply chains by implementing the  automatic tracking of important information, such as the temperature and quality of goods, shipment and delivery dates, and safety certifications of facilities. Meanwhile, IBM is keen on selling subscriptions to blockchain-related services that integrate with its cloud business.

Businesses are applying blockchain in a variety of industries, including cargo shipping, poultry, and diamonds. The new way in which the food industry is using blockchain is set to bring the technology one step closer to production.

Related news

IstanBlock 2020 – bringing Turkey and blockchain together

Istanbul will host its first-ever Turkey blockchain week from April 6-10, with the main event IstanBlock 2020 being held on April 9-10. Throughout the week the focus will be on Turkey’s rapid and growing adoption of the technology, and the opportunities it presents. The event has already attracted big names, including government speakers and Turkish institutions, as well as a host of blockchain media, businesses, and influencers. Turkey is enjoying a strong relationship with blockchain and cryptocurrencies. A recent survey conducted by ING, found Turks were helping drive the adoption of cryptocurrencies, with a second survey showing that 20 percent of the population use or own cryptocurrency. This is more than three times the percentage of the UK population who use or own cryptocurrencies and over double the percentage of Germans. Erhan Korhaliller, CEO of blockchain PR firm EAK Digital, has organized the event to raise awareness of Turkish blockchain projects and cryptocurrencies and to connect businesses and start-ups with Istanbul’s vibrant crypto scene. “This isn’t just a conference, it’s a celebration,” Erhan said. “As the ING report found Turkish people are already heavily invested in cryptocurrencies. “We have developed IstanBlock 2020 to be a showcase of the amazing technologies that are changing the world in which we live. This is a chance to put Turkey on the world stage, and to share everything that is so exciting about blockchain.” It is estimated that there will be more than 20 events throughout the week, with the showcase, IstanBlock 2020, rounding off events on April 9-10, at Istanbul’s prestigious Hilton Bomanti Hotel. More than 2,000 delegates are expected to gather for the event which will feature more than 100 international speakers, and some of the biggest names in blockchain including Youtubers Ivan on Tech and Datadash, among many others. As a leading blockchain PR Agency, EAK Digital is also bringing its pedigree in blockchain communications and media to the fore and will be expecting to bring some of the biggest and best media from both mainstream and blockchain media outlets to the event, including CryptoSlate, Cointelegraph, Coindesk, CNBC, Forbes, The Next Web, and many more. Reporters and editors from these respected publications will be joined by representatives from Turkish government departments and leading Turkish businesses. Erhan said this was the perfect time to bring blockchain and Turkey together. “Turkey has such a thriving market for cryptocurrency and blockchain startups that remains relatively untapped from leading international projects in this industry.“ He elaborated: “By launching the first-ever Istanbul Blockchain Week, we are giving the opportunity for international projects to come in and stake a claim in one of the most thriving crypto/ blockchain communities in the world.” … “I am hugely passionate that IstanBlock 2020 will inspire a generation of Turkish people, to enable them to find jobs in this industry, build strategic partnerships between Turkish and international projects, and finally for the eyes of the international media to shine a light on Turkish projects and the Turkish blockchain ecosystem as a whole.” … “In doing so, we can make a real difference and provide an unforgettable experience, and in doing so cement Turkey’s status as a leader in blockchain and crypto adoption.” You can find out more about the event, and sign up for updates at: www.istanbulblockchainweek.com or join the Telegram community here Sponsorship The event promises a range of sponsorship options across four distinct tiers: Diamond, Gold, Silver, and Bronze. To find out more about what sponsorship includes, please email istanbulblockchainweek@eakdigital.com Disclosure: CryptoSlate is a media partner for IstanBlock 2020. The post IstanBlock 2020 – bringing Turkey and blockchain together appeared first on CryptoSlate.
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