Blockchain for Supply Chains
The adoption of blockchain for supply chains for fresh food can be a positive development for growers, suppliers, distributors and retailers when a proper use case is articulated. Defining how to use blockchain technology in a way that returns direct value to growers, shippers and retailers is key to successful adoption. Zest Labs has identified the benefits related to food safety –both in preventing or minimizing incidents and reliably identifying the food source. For growers and shippers, the data about their produce or protein captured in the blockchain can also provide significant insights into operational efficiencies and produce quality and shelf life making blockchain cost-effective and beneficial for all members of the fresh food supply chain.
Zest Labs has demonstrated that value, providing significant improvements in both operational processes and key produce and protein characteristics. Retailers can also benefit by improving the quality and shelf-life consistency of received produce and proteins. The lack of information about the processing and condition of received fruits, vegetables, meats and seafood is currently costing retailers significant money, as waste and markdowns reduce their profit margins. Zest Fresh integrates blockchain technology to deliver benefits to each constituent, while embracing a proactive approach to helping prevent and minimize food safety incidents.
Blockchain for Supply Chains provides an opportunity for growers to embrace technology that can help securely organize their data and provide new insights for addressing pre- and post-harvest challenges.
For retailers, blockchain for supply chains can help address food safety requirements and provide true transparency across the supply chain.
A Hybrid Approach Overcomes Blockchain’s Limitations
For the adoption of any technology to be successful, there must be proven value to each participant in the supply chain. On its own, blockchain cannot collect or analyze the data required to improve the fresh food supply chainand blockchain is not currently optimized for forward traceability.
Zest Fresh utilizes a hybrid-approach for blockchain for the supply chain which is a more viable model for success. This, hybrid model for blockchain for the fresh food supply chain consists of:
- A SaaS-based platform to collect, evaluate and analyze
- Blockchain an smart contracts for transparency and validation.
- Optimized backward and forward traceability.