Report: the potential of blockchain for agri-food 29/05/2019

For almost three years, Fairfood has been involved in the development of blockchain technology (BCT) for the agri-food sector. Obviously we’re not the only one. Together with Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation, we explored where the technology stands right now and what the potential is for the agri-food sector in low and middle income countries (LMICs). The results are bundled in the report that can be downloaded below.

Through talks with Ad Rietberg (director Agri-wallet) and Rene Oostewechel (Expert Postharvest Technology, WUR/FBR) amongst others, and by examining cases such as Albert Heijn’s oranges and AgUnity, we’ve looked where the technology is currently at. Blockchain can ease access to supply chain finance for smallholder farmers and other chain actors, can enable direct payments to actors in the supply chain and can reduce transaction costs of money transfer to LMICs.

The interviewees agreed that blockchain can offer solutions to strengthen trust between supply chain actors, in countries where the market is less regulated and organized. Possibly one of the most beautiful promises of the technology lays in the way it can strengthen the position of the people at the very beginning of our food chains: “BCT solutions may increase the transparency in supply chains, which can ultimately raise awareness to the conditions under which producers and agricultural workers live and work and lead to increased power on the farmers’ side.”

The analyses for LMICs is preceded by a crash course blockchain, making this report a must-read for everyone.