Can blockchain ensure the safety of the food on your plate?

How sure are you of what is on your today’s lunch plate? Even if you cooked the dish yourself, you can’t be 100% certain of where your green market supplied the vegetables or how long it took for the chicken to arrive in your local shop.

Stats warn against unsafe foods all the time. According to WHO, over 400,000 people dying from contaminated food per year, concerns are justified. So far, global trade hasn’t made it easy to track down food poisoning sources with confidence. But it seems that we are finally seeing one innovative technology break new ground in food safety.

FOOD ALLIANCES WILL CHANGE THE RELATED SUPPLY WITH THE HELP OF THE BLOCKCHAIN TECH

The blockchain development project Hyperledger Sawtooth introduced by the Linux Foundation uses distributed ledger technology to track food and other goods back to their origin. With it, we can keep food manufacturers accountable for what they pack. We can ask questions about who raised or planted the food. We can understand how long it took for a specific food to get to our fridge. What’s even more important, we will learn what it takes for an exotic fruit to reach us and understand more about the costs and the process of the shipment.

Long gone are the days when blockchain development was associated with cryptocurrency markets. Now, almost 25,000 individual users are contributing to improving the open-source coding platform. They come not only from tech, but also from finance, education and healthcare. Hundreds of blockchain startups are on. The diversity is remarkable.

How will distributed ledgers make our food safer? It’s pretty simple: we will keep track of what everyone in the food supply chain network did, when and how; all at the same time an in the same place.

WHERE IS THE CATCH: REPLICATED LEDGERS AND IOT SENSORS

Food supply chains have many participants. Exact numbers at any given point in time are difficult to tell. Almost no one knows all other past or future participants in the network. This is where blockchain makes a change. By using replicated distributed ledger copies each participant will have a real-time insight of the made changes. Changes are there to stay for good. The technology is such that past records are immutable.

Next, the data input in the Hyperledger food tracking system gets a helping hand from IoT sensors. Since sensors are capable of recording several attributes of short-lived goods, such as temperature, humidity and location, they can be successfully incorporated in the blockchain solution. Immutability of the records makes fraud impossible. The same copy of the ledger shared by the trusted business partners supports the secure and reliable supply chains.

According to Forbes, big food industry names such as Nestle and Walmart are looking into using blockchain development to raise up the notch of their food safety profiles.

BLOCKCHAIN FOOD SAFETY: EXPANDING THE INFLUENCE

It’s not only food that can be traced back to its source of origin. Hyperledger Sawtooth and its compatibility with Solidity will be discussed among blockchain developers on the next Hyperledger Hyderabad meetup in India. It is just one of the 88 globally created meetups that support the open-source platform. Right now may be the best time to try it out. You just might help many meals across the globe become more relaxed and pleasurable experiences.


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Author; Michael Kordvani
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