U.S. berry producer joins IBM Food Trust blockchain

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U.S-based California Giant Berry Farms announced it is using IBM Food Trust blockchain for its berry supply chains, according to a report by The Packer. The company aims to provide its customers with provenance details and product tracking using blockchain.

Privately-held California Giant is among the top berry producers in the United States.

Last year, Ramesh Gopinath, IBM’s VP of Blockchain Solutions for Supply Chain, spoke to Ledger Insights about IBM Food Trust. He commented that strawberries typically have a shelf life of 14 to 20 days. That means if you buy them 18 days after harvest, at best you have two days left in the fridge. By sharing information collaboratively, it’s possible to maximise the shelf life.

California Giant is using blockchain to record the harvest time and location data of its berries, and efficiently track their movement to ensure both food safety and freshness. 

“This will allow Cal Giant and our partners to streamline and identify opportunities for improvement around operational efficiencies with a focus on freshness,” said Thomas Taggart, senior director of operations. 

California Giant used Glassbit’s Glasschain software, a compliance-as-a-service (CaaS) solution to link the company and its supply chain participants’ ERP software with IBM Food Trust. 

IBM Food Trust is one of the biggest blockchain food traceability initiatives around the globe and is currently in use by numerous producers, wholesalers, and retailers. Walmart, which stocks California Giant berries and is a Food Trust member, commended the initiative.

In theory, if all supply chain participants are part of the blockchain network, food traceability could be guaranteed from farm to table. 

“As more companies become compliant, it will be exciting to see the overall improvements that will collectively be made around our food supply chain,” said Joe Barsi, President of California Giant. 

Some notable members of IBM Food Trust include Nestle, Carrefour, Drakes, and Albertsons, among many others. 

While Walmart is also a member of IBM Food Trust, Walmart China is working with VeChain for food traceability, especially meat products. There are a few beef traceability projects in Australia. Blockchain firm R3 and ripe.io are building a food traceability blockchain.

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