LINKFRESH and BLOCKCHAIN Traceability
Blockchain? What is it? Well, in short, it is sophisticated traceability and ‘proof of provenance’.
BlockChain is increasingly being talked about within the Fresh Produce sector. Walmart’s recent announcement mandating the use of the IBM ‘Fabric’ BlockChain solution for ‘leafy greens’ by 2020 has certainly increased the volume.
IBM’s ‘Fabric’ solution is one of several solutions currently under development. Some say that, as it is based on ‘multiple servers’, it is expensive, particularly for Fresh Produce., even though IBM are currently saying it is ‘free at the point of data entry’ and they only plan to charge for ‘analysis and data extracts’. But this, as with most BlockChain’ developments, seems to be fluid and emerging.
‘Sawtooth’ is an alternative that is less ‘server-heavy’ as it is based on algorithms, and some believe it is thus more appropriate for ‘Fresh’.
And there are many others too.
Whilst Walmart’s early enthusiasm has everyone’s attention, it is worth noting that Walmart have a history of starting such initiatives and then quietly withdrawing them… so many are yet skeptical.
With all the variables, as an ERP provider focussing purely on Fresh Produce, what should LINKFRESH do?
Well, partly we will have to track our customers. Giumarra, Dole and Total Produce are just three of our larger customers who are very actively involved in BlockChain, so our dialogue with them clearly shapes our thinking.
We also sit on the PMA ‘BlockChain Task Force’, so we are part of the industry dialogue, contributing and learning, and that too influences our thinking.
As it seems that there will be several different BlockChain ‘options’ for some time to come, our strategy is to use ‘BlockChain Middleware’, so we provide one interface to the ‘middleware’ which in turn manages the actual interface to each of the current providers.
So, as BlockChain develops, LINKFRESH will track the developments, and will always be BLOCKCHAIN READY.
LINKFRESH is actively involved in the BlockChain movement, and are at the forefront of the dialogue. Having a solution built around Microsoft Dynamics makes interfacing with external solutions easy. ‘Inter-Operability’ is at the heart of the Dynamics technology. So we are able to deliver BlockChain enabled ERP, today, tomorrow and as it develops… in the future.