New IBM blockchain tie-up targets seafood protection

Tech giant IBM has partnered with Raw Seafoods Inc to create a platform that will monitor the seafood supply chain. The initial product that will be monitored will be scallops, and it is hoped that this partnership will improve the transparency of where scallops originated, plus provide a secure, sustainable record related to the supply chain.

Initially, IBM will work with a fleet of scallop boats off the coast of Massachusetts. These boats will share data related to their catches, enabling those involved in the supply chain to be able to know where and when the catch was made.

In a statement, IBM explained that the “platform will also track when the boat landed portside, and when each scallop lot was hand graded, selected, packed and shipped to its final destination.” The data, along with images and video, will be uploaded via staellite.

This technology will address a number of problems related to this industry. According to U.S. Department of Agriculture data, at least 80% of Americans eat far less than the recommended amount of seafood they are to consume each week. This has become a growing problem which is partially attributed to the widespread fraud and mislabeling of seafoods that are sold to consumers.

By storing this data using the blockchain, those at the end of the supply chain will be able to prove the source of where the goods originated. Daniel McQuade, the VP in charge of marketing for Raw Seafoods, explained, “We are always actively engaged in helping our suppliers, retailers and restaurants deliver a product that’s well above the industry standard for quality and freshness. With IBM Food Trust, we found the perfect tool for establishing a direct link between the consumer and the captain of the boat that caught their fish, empowering shoppers and diners to demand more from their food supply chain.”

In August, IBM partnered with Chainyard to launch a new supply chain platform that would create a sort of digital platform authenticating goods within the supply chain. In addition, IBM has created platforms using blockchain technology to monitor supply chains for Nestle, Walmart, Lenovo, and others.

Walmart pilot to track shrimp imports via blockchain

American retail giant Walmart has continued its foray into blockchain technology with a pilot project that will track shrimp imports. The project will ensure end-to-end traceability for shrimp sourced from India, a report by Inc42 has revealed. The retailer, which is the largest in the world both by revenue and employee count, believes the use of blockchain technology will improve the quality of the product.

The pilot will focus on shrimp imported from the state of Andhra Pradesh in India to selected Sam Club’s locations in the United States. The membership-only store, which is operated by Walmart requires all its suppliers of seafood products to complete internationally-recognized standard best aquaculture practices (BAP). This standard has previously made it impossible for small farmers to supply to the retailer, but this is all set to change.

To further support the small farmers in Andhra Pradesh, Walmart intends to fund them so that they can acquire BAP certificates. It will also assist them to gain new market opportunities.

In a statement, the company noted, “The introduction of blockchain in the shrimp supply chain could help improve the quality of information on the product for compliance purposes and for sharing with consumers, providing added traceability beginning at the farm and extending throughout the transportation process.”

Walmart has partnered with Sandhya Aqua, a seafood processing company based in Andhra Pradesh and Stanley Pearlman Enterprises, a U.S.-based supplier.

Chowdary Kunam, managing director of Sandhya Aqua, commented, “This end-to-end blockchain pilot is the first of its kind in India and has the potential to create long-term economic opportunity for the shrimp farming community in Andhra Pradesh, directly benefiting the farmers through new skills training and development.”

The project could grow into a multi-billion dollar channel, especially since India continues to dominate the shrimp market globally. The Asian country exports most of its shrimp to the U.S., with the industry registering $2.17 billion in 2018.

Walmart has continued to venture into blockchain technology, with its projects ranging from supply chain management to stablecoin ambitions. The retailer already relies on blockchain technology to trace its leafy greens while also assisting the FDA to track prescription drugs on the blockchain.

Blockchain to track Honduran organic coffee beans

People love their coffee. They want to be drinking the very best tasting beans, and this is why many are willing to choose organic coffee beans to get the best flavor and the best health benefits. To help accommodate that, coffee bean growers in Honduras are partnering with a Texas-based supply chain software developer to track shipments to ensure the authenticity.

In a release issued on September 24, it was reported that over 12,000 farmers in the Central American country have partnered with GrainChain to monitor the production and distribution systems of these organic beans. The system will register and audit fair trade coffee beans using blockchain technology.

Receiving a fair trade and organic certification is not an easy task. There are a number of requirements, which include adopting organic farming practices all the way up to allowing frequent inspections and ensuring equitable working conditions for employees.

Adding to the challenge is the fact that it is difficult to prove one’s compliance with the regulations. Finding a secure platform that accommodates all of this information has been difficult, especially in Latin American countries.

That no longer appears to be the case. GrainChain will provide a secure system that allows regulators and farmers to be able to enter data and retrieve that information when needed. “Our platform provides guarantees and visibility through the entire process, which empowers growers and vendors while reducing risk to bankers and buyers,” explain GrainChain CEO, Luis Macias.

Whenever a farmer is audited to ensure that they are in compliance, not only will the GrainChain platform provide the information to prove compliance, but those who are found to be in compliance will receive small loans deposited into their digital wallets. This will act as a reward for ensuring that they have followed all the regulatory guidelines.

These loans are provided by partners of GrainChain and will not require any check of credit history to be approved. These loans will help farmers to be able to purchase supplies and equipment. A portion of the digital currency will be available to be redeemed as fiat currency.

This certification is a really big deal. Sales of fair traded certified goods are growing quickly. In 2017 total sales of these certified goods was at 8% of the overall product sold. That was nearly $10 billion in goods, and it is expected that that number has risen by as much as 25% over the last two years.

How does blockchain traceability work?

Traceability has become increasingly critical as globalization takes root. Nowadays, one product can have a very long and complex manufacturing and supply chain that can span several countries and regions. A company in Germany could be assembling parts made by a company in China, which in turn gets its raw materials from Brazil. The entire process needs to be traced to ensure the quality of all the products. While several solutions have been developed in the past, they all fade in comparison to the efficiency that blockchain traceability has introduced.

Traceability is the ability to trace the history, application or location of an entity by means of recorded identification. It’s as crucial for business owners as it is for consumers. According to some estimates, U.S. companies lose $600 billion a year to counterfeit goods, a challenge that blockchain traceability can eradicate. Consumers also get to track the goods they consume, giving them confidence in the brands they consume.

Blockchain traceability works in tandem with other technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT). IoT sensors are placed on goods so that they can collect data from these goods and aggregate this data into information that is then stored on the distributed ledger.

Once the information is recorded on the blockchain, it becomes a permanent record as the blockchain is immutable. The transparent nature of the blockchain also allows the users to easily access information. For instance, by simply scanning a QR code, you can track the beef in a supermarket to its origin and get to see all the processes it has undergone.

The immutable nature of the blockchain also ensures that illegal activities are easily recognizable and easier to trace. Any record on the blockchain is permanent, enabling law enforcement to trace any illegal activity with accuracy back to the offender. This has been applied by several law enforcement agencies already, with the FBI especially cracking down on illegal activities conducted in the dark web.

Blockchain traceability also enables the sharing of real-time information. This is critical, especially in the supply chain industry where access to timely information can save a company millions of dollars. It also enables the participants to respond quickly to any threats or breakdowns as the records on the blockchain are updated at the same time for every participant.

Blockchain traceability is setting new standards for supply chains globally, ensuring that not only do the participants save millions of dollars in costs; they also get to reduce fraud, counterfeiting and other illegal activities. Bitcoin SV offers the best enterprise network for blockchain traceability. Businesses that build on the BSV blockchain enjoy the ability to massively scale, low transaction fees and real-time transactions.

To learn more about how businesses can harness the transformational power of Bitcoin SV to enforce traceability, you must attend CoinGeek Seoul. The event will bring together some of the most brilliant minds of our time, including Bitcoin creator Dr. Craig S. Wright and Bitcoin Association Founding President Jimmy Nguyen. Grab your tickets now.

Get 20% off the CoinGeek Seoul conference tickets when buying with BSV, plus conference attendees can also take advantage of exclusive discount to the Le Meridien Seoul. Check out this link, select “Group code” at the Special Rates tab and simply type the promo code RE1RE1A to receive the hotel discount.

블록체인 추적 가능성은 어떻게 작동하나요?

세계화가 뿌리를 내리면서 추적 가능성은 점점 중요해져 왔습니다. 오늘날에는 한 제품에 여러 국가와 지역을 걸쳐 확장될 수 있는 매우 길고 복잡한 제조 및 공급망이 있을 수 있습니다. 즉 독일 기업이 중국 기업에서 만든 부품을 조립할 수 있으며, 브라질에서 원료를 얻습니다. 따라서 모든 제품의 품질을 보장하기 위해 전체 프로세스를 추적해야 합니다. 과거에 여러 솔루션이 개발되었지만 블록체인 추적 가능성으로 도입된 효율성과 비교하여 모두 자취를 감추고 있습니다.

추적 가능성은 기록된 식별을 이용하여 개체의 기록, 응용 프로그램 또는 위치를 추적할 수 있는 능력입니다. 이는 사업주뿐만 아니라 소비자에게도 중요합니다. 일부 추정에 따르면 미국 기업은 블록체인 추적 가능성으로 근절할 수 있는 과제인 위조품에 대해 한 해 6,000억 달러를 잃습니다. 또한 소비자는 소비하는 제품을 추적하여 소비하는 브랜드에 대해 신뢰할 수 있습니다.

블록체인 추적 가능성은 사물 인터넷(IoT)과 같은 다른 기술과 협력하여 작동합니다. IoT 센서는 제품에 부착되어 해당 제품에서 데이터를 수집하고, 이 데이터를 분산원장에 저장되는 정보로 통합할 수 있습니다.

이 정보가 블록체인에 기록되면 블록체인은 변경할 수 없으므로 영구 기록이 됩니다. 또한 블록체인의 투명한 본질 덕분에 사용자가 정보에 쉽게 액세스할 수 있습니다. 예를 들어 QR 코드를 스캔하기만 하면 슈퍼마켓에서 소고기의 원산지를 추적할 수 있으며 일련의 모든 프로세스를 알 수 있습니다.

또한 블록체인의 변경할 수 없는 본질은 불법적인 활동을 쉽게 식별하고 더 쉽게 추적할 수 있도록 보장합니다. 블록체인에 있는 모든 기록은 영구적이므로 법 집행 기관이 모든 불법적인 활동을 정확하게 추적하여 범죄자까지 밝혀낼 수 있습니다. 이는 이미 여러 법 집행 기관에 의해 적용되었으며, 특히 FBI는 다크 웹에서 수행된 불법적인 활동을 엄중히 단속합니다.

또한 블록체인 추적 가능성으로 실시간 정보를 공유할 수 있습니다. 이는 특히 기업이 시의적절한 정보에 액세스하면 수백만 달러를 절약할 수 있는 공급망 산업에 중요합니다. 또한 블록체인에 있는 기록은 모든 참여자에 대해 동시에 업데이트되므로 참여자가 모든 위협 또는 분석 결과에 신속하게 대응할 수 있습니다.

블록체인 추적 가능성은 참여자들이 수백만 달러의 비용을 절약할 수 있도록 돕고 사기, 위조 및 기타 불법적인 활동을 줄이면서 세계적으로 공급망에 대한 새로운 표준을 세우고 있습니다. 비트코인 SV는 블록체인 추적 가능성을 위한 최고의 기업 네트워크를 제공합니다. BSV 블록체인을 토대로 하는 기업들은 엄청난 확장성, 낮은 거래 수수료와 실시간 거래를 누리고 있습니다.

기업이 비트코인 SV가 가진 변형적 힘을 활용하여 추적 가능성을 시행하는 방법에 대해 더 많이 배우려면 코인긱 서울에 참석해야 합니다. 행사는 비트코인 창시자 크레이그 라이트(Craig S. Wright) 박사와 비트코인 협회 대표 지미 응우옌(Jimmy Nguyen)을 포함한 우리 시대 최고의 두뇌들이 모이는 자리가 될 것입니다. 바로 티켓을 예매하세요.

Future of supply chain management is Bitcoin SV

Click here to read in Korean.

Supply chain management has greatly evolved with time, with new technology introducing efficiency, speed and cost effectiveness to the industry. However, even then, supply chain management is still very complex and unnecessarily costly. Blockchain technology has revolutionized this industry, introducing transparency and saving time and costs. However, in the blockchain ecosystem, Bitcoin SV has stood out and has been hailed as the future of supply chain management.

A century ago, trade was mostly local and supply chain management was a simple process. However, with globalization, supply chains can span several countries and regions and involve thousands of stakeholders. This makes it crucial for businesses to put in place enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications which integrate all the processes in a single system. Bitcoin SV, with its ability to scale, fast transactional speed and low fees makes this possible.

The Bitcoin SV blockchain enables the seamless sharing of information between different parties. For producers, this enables them to plan their production accurately in response to market conditions. For instance, a distributor can reveal how many products they sell during certain times of the year, enabling the manufacturer to schedule production, which, in turn, enables the raw materials supplier to respond accordingly.

Drastic cost reduction is yet another way Bitcoin SV proves to be the future of supply chain management. The supply chain has multiple participants, from the producers to the manufacturer, from the distributors to the retailers. This drives costs through the roof. The integration of blockchain technology into the supply chain drastically reduces the number of intermediaries required as most of the processes become automated. This saves costs for the manufacturers and producer and in turn, this translates to the consumers through price reductions.

The integration of blockchain technology is not only beneficial to the producers and distributors. For the consumers, the use of blockchain in supply chain management is just as crucial. With its public blockchain, Bitcoin SV enables tracking and tracing of products throughout their entire lifecycle. Consumers can use simple QR code or RFID scanners to reveal the provenance of a good. This makes it easier to only buy products whose methods of production and distribution you most prefer.

Bitcoin SV is the only blockchain that is able to scale to meet enterprise needs, all while keeping costs negligible and maintaining very high transactional output. This makes the upcoming CoinGeek Seoul conference an event you can’t afford to miss. Attendants will get to learn first-hand how Bitcoin SV is building the future of supply chain management from leading industry minds including nChain Chief Scientist Dr. Craig S. Wright.

The two-day conference begins on October 1 at the Le Meridien Hotel in Seoul, South Korea. Don’t miss the chance to discover how Bitcoin SV is fast becoming the world’s new money and global enterprise blockchain. Get your tickets today.

Samsung eyes blockchain-based supply chain management to cut costs

Samsung eyes blockchain-based supply chain management to cut costs

The tech giant is continuously strengthening its integration of blockchain technology.

Samsung is reportedly working on transitioning to a blockchain-based system to manage their global supply chain.

In an interview with Bloomberg, blockchain chief Song Kwang-woo of Samsung SDS Co. says that the move is expected to cut shipping costs by 20%—a substantial amount considering that the Korean manufacturing giant expects 488,000 tons of air cargo and over a million 20-foot shipping containers for this year. Samsung’s global smartphone and semiconductor manufacturing supply is a multi-billion dollar business.

Blockchain technology has the perfect features to disrupt and streamline supply chains, enabling real-time communication, tracking, and documentation of relevant product information embedded in product tags for every single product in circulation. All of these can be stored and monitored in an incorruptible, time-stamped ledger, automating the currently redundant, time-consuming, paper-based manual processes that shippers still employ. It also allows easy verification of legitimate products, and can effectively purge out counterfeit goods.

With a vast line-up of benefits, several start-ups and even industry big names like IBM have joined the race pursuing the same mission—focusing on a more efficient, digital coordination system for supply chains using the technology.

“It will have an enormous impact on the supply chains of manufacturing industries. Blockchain is a core platform to fuel our digital transformation,” Song said.

This isn’t the company’s first venture into blockchain technology. Samsung is the biggest smartphone and chip manufacturer in the world, and will be one of the first and biggest companies to aggressively integrate blockchain technology into their product line. Samsung’s flagship blockchain project, Nexledger, promises to be a B2B scale infrastructure offering digital identity, payments, and authentication.

Last year, they also won a contract to take charge of the Seoul government’s public sector for blockchain platform, a project where they will cover welfare, public safety, and transportation by 2022. In January this year, the company also started manufacturing ASIC miners and peripherals, a move cryptocurrency analyst Joseph Young says would “provide Bitmain its first real competitor.”

Whether the supply of these new mining products will also be monitored by their blockchain-based supply chain management system is not specified, although it would make so much sense.

Note: Tokens in the SegWit chain are referred to as SegWit-Coin BTC (inaccurately called Bitcoin Legacy or Core by many) and SegWit Gold (SWG) and are no longer Bitcoin. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is the only true Bitcoin as intended by the original Satoshi white paper.  Bitcoin BCH is the only public block chain that offers safe and cheap microtransactions.
Blockchain technology may not be the solution to blood diamonds

Blockchain technology may not be the solution to blood diamonds

Some say that the blockchain project to fight the conflict diamond trade isn’t effective either.

In an article on Forbes, Bernard Marr outlined how blockchain technology can be used to fight the illegal diamond trade. DeBeers, along with a few other institutions, have been working on a blockchain project that would hopefully kill the “blood diamond” trade. The blockchain would supposedly track the supply chain to ensure that the only diamonds that make it to the market are ethically sourced, and that they are genuine.

Conflict diamonds, more famously referred to as blood diamonds, are illegally sourced and usually harvested from the war-torn central and western African region by civilians held at gunpoint—by rebels and even police. The skyrocketing prices tagged on diamonds have made them an attractive way to generate funds, both legally and illegally. This is a problem that has plagued the market for the past century, so much so that it inspired a movie.

Ironically, De Beers and their peers have been failing at wiping out the century-long problem that some say they helped create in the first place. International efforts to eradicate conflict diamonds have proven ineffective despite the UN-sanctioned Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS). And despite jumping in on the blockchain trend, some argue that there is still no way to guarantee that a diamond is conflict-free. IMPACT executive director Joanne Lebert said, “The public is under the wrong impression that the problem is solved.”

Solving this problem is undoubtedly tricky, seeing as diamonds are not really rare. If it were, terrorists would be looking for a different way to finance their terrorism. They are actually among the most common gems on Earth. Perhaps letting the market run its natural course and having the technically worthless stones drop in value would have criminals dropping them too?

Controlling the supply to simulate scarcity bites back eventually when supply from all directions come pouring in, unravelling the simulated rarity. This is the problem with manipulating the market: a business that depends on faking scarcity so you can inflate the price (or practically name your price) will collapse sooner or later. Or in the case of the diamond trade, gaps keep opening up. But even so, it’s highly unlikely that their profits are in jeopardy, seeing as they are raking in between 90 to 125% in mark-up per stone.

While supply chain is one of blockchain tech’s best uses, it may not be the right fix to the problem, especially because this may be more of a social issue rather than a safety one from the point-of-view of consumers. With livestock and food supply, consumers obviously prioritize ethical and legal sources. After all, it could potentially mean the difference between life and death. But for something you don’t ingest, such as a diamond ring, consumers couldn’t care less about ethics when dangled with a big discount—hence, the undying illegal diamond trade.

Whether a blockchain-based supply management and tracking system is the right solution for this problem is absolutely debatable. Blockchain technology was never meant to be a cure-all for the world’s ills. If consumers can track the movement of priceless goods such as gold or diamonds, so can criminals. Of course, there are ways to circumvent this issue, although cybercriminals are persistent and can possibly circumvent any circumvention.

While the quest to end the blood diamond trade goes beyond corporate reasons, it brings to question whether tracking priceless gems on the blockchain are even worth the effort, or if it’s just another marketing stunt. But anyone with any idea to help stop unethically sourced supplies are welcome to weigh in, the world is thirsty for blockchain start-ups, after all.

Note: Tokens in the SegWit chain are referred to as SegWit1X (BTC) and SegWit Gold (SWG) and are no longer Bitcoin. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is the only true Bitcoin as intended by the original Satoshi white paper.  Bitcoin BCH is the only public block chain that offers safe and cheap microtransactions.
Chinese ecommerce giant JD taps blockchain tech to track safe meat

Chinese ecommerce giant JD taps blockchain tech to track safe meat

Hopefully this will put an end to fake meat, such as the rat mutton.

Beijing-based e-commerce giant JD.com has partnered up with global meat merchant InterAgri to employ blockchain technology and track down their meat supply—from their source farm in Australian beef and cattle exporter HW Greenham & Sons down to the end consumer. The move hopes to help curb the circulation of counterfeit meat from unsafe and unverified sources by differentiating their meat products with a proof of authenticity.

For several years, China has been battling illegal and unsafe supply of goods, including meat. Apart from meat that may possibly have been contaminated by drugs and disease, some are even selling fake meat. In 2013, the government seized 20,000 tonnes of illegal meat products, including fox, mink, and rat meat being passed off as mutton. A total of 904 were arrested within three months of the crackdown, with one of the suspects reportedly earning over £1 million ($1.38 million) over a span of four years through selling illegal meat.

In a press release, JD says their smart supply chain project will enable consumers to verify where their meat is sourced from, how they were processed and transported. JD CTO Chen Zhang believes the blockchain product will increase confidence from their 266 million consumers.

“We’re excited to partner with InterAgri to deliver this level of transparency to our 266 million customer base. We’re increasingly implementing blockchain-enabled traceability solutions to give consumers confidence that they are buying safe, reliable products for their families. Consumers in China don’t just want quality imported products, they want to know that they can trust how and where their food is sourced, and blockchain helps us deliver this peace of mind,” Chen said.

JD is not alone in pursuing this direction for managing and securing the supply chain. In 2016, Walmart also deployed a blockchain project to monitor food products, and pinpoint any contaminated sources faster and more accurately. Walmart’s system also increases accountability since it records and shows the name of the inspector (or inspectors) that gave a particular product the clear.

Note: Tokens in the SegWit chain are referred to as SegWit1X (BTC) and SegWit Gold (SWG) and are no longer Bitcoin. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) is the only true  Bitcoin as intended by the original Satoshi white paper.  Bitcoin BCH is the only public block chain that offers safe and cheap microtransactions.