It was recently announced that Walmart has been working on a pilot strategy with IBM to incorporate blockchain technology by the end of 2018. Walmart intends to use IBM’s blockchain platform to identify food products in the supply chain and track them from farm to customer. In other words, Walmart blockchain pilot will help to increase the transparency of the company’s fulfillment process.
Back in 2017, Walmart and IBM announced they would “work together” to create a method of “collecting data about the origin, safety and authenticity of food” using blockchain technology. For some time, the supply chain industry has been plagued by a lack of transparency. Companies dealing with organic produce find it very difficult to monitor the quality of food provided to the customer.
Through the use of blockchain technology, Walmart will not only be able to check how efficient their supply lines are, but will also be able to locate and recall low quality produce quickly. In the past, Walmart has used IBM’s blockchain platform to trace food to its original source within two seconds. The use of blockchain has increased the efficiency of the supply chain massively.
Without blockchain the process of tracing food to its original source could easily take a few weeks. Though the adoption of blockchain is in its infancy in the supply chain industry, its widespread adoption could streamline the fulfillment process and improve the quality of end products supplied to the customer.
Walmart blockchain initiative comes as part of a wider transition towards the adoption of blockchain technology across multiple industries. Juniper Research’s Enterprise Survey indicates that around two thirds of large corporations will be using blockchain by the end of 2018. Many of those will follow Walmart’s lead and aim to increase the quality of their products via the supply chain.
As more large companies like Walmart adopt blockchain technology to monitor their supply lines we can only expect more organizations to follow suit. The complexity of the supply chain has remained problematic for quality control for quite some time. In future, companies will be able to use blockchain not just to give customers better products, but healthier ones too.