As Bitcoin and other blockchain based technologies are rising, the use of said technology being used is continuing to grow exponentially. Of course, maybe you are asking yourself, “What is the blockchain?” Well, according to IBM’s “Blockchain 101,” the blockchain is:
“It’s a shared ledger for recording the history of transactions – that cannot be altered.”
Now, how can it be used in the food industry? Or a better question, how is it currently being used?
Currently, one of the ways it is being used is for tracking food. The retail giant, Walmart, is currently using the blockchain to track Chinese pork with the help of IBM’s blockchain technology. This is to ensure that you don’t consume contaminated food and prevent major outbreaks.
Right now, IBM is really focusing on the benefits of using the blockchain for food safety. By using the blockchain, we can prevent outbreaks like the many that have happened in the US alone. Anyone remember what happened with Chipotle? Yeah, with the blockchain, reports that before have taken weeks, even months to report, could take fractions of the time before infected products even show up on shelves. IBM is starting to do the same with cereal.
When you go out to do groceries and look for “healthy” products, you usually check of the non-GMO, organic, whatever-free stamp on the packaging. Well, IBM is trying to do the same, but to make sure consumers know what they are purchasing, was tracked with blockchain technology. Yet, this isn’t really that uncommon. Cereal boxes and other foods have been tracked before, but with RFID chips for a long time. Even before the public knowledge of the blockchain, with Walmart being one of the first. Of course, you may be thinking that this only benefits giants like Walmart, but that is not all true.
This technology not only benefits companies like Walmart, they also benefit the food industry as a whole. From farmers and processors to sellers and buyers, they all benefit from having information being processed through this technology because of how fast an efficient it is to store data. Maybe you want to know where exactly your food was made. Blockchain. Or you want to know where it was grown. Blockchain. Maybe all you want to know information about how it got to your table. Blockchain.
This video from IBM is an excellent explanation as to how the blockchain can be used to benefit the food industry and consumers when purchasing foods. All the important data about, where, when, and how the food you eat got to where it is, can all be stored and delivered through the blockchain.
I hope that you, the reader, was able to understand what the blockchain is and how it is currently being used in the food industry. Not as a flashy marketing gimmick, but as a real tool that can help all of us know more about the food we buy and consume on a daily basis.
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