Is There a Possibility for Blockchain Technology to Transfigure the Food Industry?August 9, 2018
There has been a massive buzz on Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies of late. While some people believe crypto is fraud, others think it’s the largest economic revolution of the planet since the internet. Bitcoin has brought to light blockchain tech that presents the extreme potential for food safety and confirmation in the agri-food industry. It’s far from being the solution for an array of problems that affect the sector.
In a nutshell, blockchain technology is a process of keeping and sharing information through a network of users in an open virtual space. It enables users to search at every transaction instantaneously and in real-time. Since transactions aren’t kept in any single location, it’s almost difficult to hack the data.
For consumers out there, blockchain technology can make a huge difference. But how?
By reading a QR code with a smartphone, data like the animal’s date of birth, vaccinations, use of antibiotics and location where the livestock was harvested can be conveyed easily to the consumers.
Facilitating Food Safety
Blockchain establishes a supply chain more transparent at a new level. It also supports the whole chain to be more responsive to any food safety calamities. Huge organizations like Unilever and Nestle are considering the help of blockchain technologies for that reason.
Blockchain also enables particular products to be tracked at any given period. That could help to lessen food waste. For example, contaminated goods can be tracked quickly and easily, while safe foods would go on the shelves and not be directed on landfills.
Nevertheless, it will work if the information at the source is correct. That’s because the existing practices in the food sector are more open to human error. Most of the compliance data is checked by trusted third parties and kept either on a centralized database or paper. Such databases are extremely susceptible to high operating expenses, hacking, informational inaccuracies and intentional errors. These are all triggered by fraudulent behavior and corruption.
The good thing, blockchain runs anonymously. That makes mistakes distinguishable from individual culprits. For instance, XinFin’s XDC protocol is a hybrid technology which enables peer-to-peer contracts over regulated payment rails in approved jurisdictions. XinFin allows financial institutions with tools to undertake P2P financial contracts between suppliers, buyers, corporation, and government. It helps in the efficient use of capital as well as the deployment of projects without encumbering the treasury.
Streamline and Faster Payment Transactions
Blockchain also enables everybody to be paid much faster, from plate to farm. Farmers could sell much faster and be compensated properly as market data would be available and validated already.
Blockchain technology could signify legal options for farmers who feel obliged to depend on marketing boards to sell their merchandises. The use of blockchain like XDC could avoid retroactive payments and price coercion.
Blockchain technology in the agri-food sector has potential, but it requires a bit of work. Competitiveness, productivity, sustainability, and transparency are among the aspects of the agri-food sector that could be greatly improved.