Despite the obstacles of implementing blockchain, the food industry and its supporting supply chains represent one of the most important applications of the technology.
Blockchain can help to break down information silos to improve visibility and traceability from the farm to the table, according to a new study from market research firm Chain Business Insights.
“The food supply chain comprises countless players that are functionally and geographically diverse,” Ken Cottrill, co-founder of Chain Business Insights, explains. “Many of these entities are largely unaware of each other, and have very different commercial agendas. This fragmented structure inhibits the free flow of information up and down the supply chain.”
However, current forces require a different configuration of the supply chain. Among them are: population growth, the AgTech boom, depleting natural resources, demographic changes, shifting buying patterns, safety concerns, the war on waste, the fight against fraud and tighter regulations.
The report examines the mid-section of the foodservice supply chain. It begins with food manufacturers (that receive the raw materials from producers such as farms and fisheries), and ends with the venues that serve food to consumers. This is where the complexities of the supply chain and the rivalries of its stakeholders are especially apparent.