Farm to Cradle: Nestle Experiments with Tracking Gerber Baby Food on the Blockchain
Comment of the Day

September 25 2018

Commentary by Eoin Treacy

Farm to Cradle: Nestle Experiments with Tracking Gerber Baby Food on the Blockchain

This article from the Wall Street Journal may be of interest to subscribers. Here is a section:

Food Trust members in the past year or so have tested various segments of the food supply chain, including Walmart’s mango logistics, aiming ultimately for a farm-to-grocery aisle view of how food moves.

Last fall, Nestlé tested the traceability of its Libby canned pumpkin on Food Trust, learning that tracking a single-ingredient food from a limited number of U.S. growers is relatively simple, Mr. Tyas said.

The baby food experiments involve multiple ingredients and some cross-border transactions. In one test, Nestlé is working with farmers and processors of apples, sweet potatoes and pumpkin. In another, the partner is a mango provider in Colombia.

A challenge for Nestlé in adopting the Food Trust blockchain is having to build interfaces to connect its many shipping, trucking, processing and other software systems related to managing its fruits, vegetables and other ingredients to the new technology, Mr. Tyas said.

Eoin Treacy's view

E coli might as well be uranium when it comes to the damage it can do to the bottom line of food companies. In an era where food companies depend on a complex global supply chains and where antibiotic resistant microbes are proliferating, delivering a clean supply chain record both for consumers and to trace problems is increasingly important. Blockchain’s public ledger is an elegant solution to that particular problem.

IBM is investing in technologies like blockchain, artificial intelligence and quantum computing and sees its future as a software as a service business. However, it’s legacy mainframe business and 380000 employees remain an obstacle to realising this ambition. The share has been ranging above $140 since 2016 and will need to continue to hold that level if support building is to be given the benefit of the doubt.

SAP remains in a reasonably consistent uptrend which has been punctuated by a number of large reactions which have not lasted very long. The share bounced from the region of the trend mean three weeks ago and a clear downward dynamic will be required to question medium-term scope for continued upside.

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