TE-Food, which runs blockchain food traceability projects for the likes of French retailer Auchan, recently offered governments a free solution to mitigate the effects of the deadly African Swine Fever (ASF) disease.
TE-Foods traceability network processes 18,000 pigs and 200,000 chickens daily though not all of TE-Foods traceability is on its blockchain.
Since the beginning of 2019, the ASF disease has spread from China to neighboring countries. Outbreaks were confirmed in 28 Chinese provinces/regions at the time, where 950,000 pigs have been culled.
The death rate for infected pigs from the ASF virus is nearly 100%, threatening the food supply and livelihoods of millions of people in East Asia.
One of the key issues in emerging and developing countries is that there is often a complete lack of communication between food safety authorities and food supply chain companies. This makes governmental tasks difficult mainly because they lack an overview of the actual supply/demand for fresh produce in a region or a country.
Due to the lack of information, there is no way for governments to spot early warning signs of a potential epidemic or react efficiently in the case that one occurs. More importantly, they cannot forecast the potential damage of the epidemic and plan accordingly to manage subsidies.
In addition, governments currently have difficulty educating farmers on how to contain and react to epidemics.
As the first initiative of its charity program, TE-Food is now offering a blockchain-based solution to governments through its Livestock Management System and its Epidemic Control Module.
The system would give governments direct access to the real-time status of livestock. Companies can send reports using the TE-Food mobile app, where state veterinaries can verify the information through the app.
This network would give governments access to real-time data and establish direct communications between suppliers and officials. Authorities will now be able to respond quickly and plan according to real-time data, enabling governments to better contain and minimize the effects of current and future epidemics.
TE-Foods is one of the most active startups in the food traceability sector. IBM’s Food Trust is one of the highest profile initiatives, but there are plenty of others. In Australia insurer, NTI is helping to track beef, and Swiss food company Gustav Gerig is monitoring tuna.
On March 26-27 2019 Hanson Wade are running a conference, Blockchain for the Food & Beverage Supply Chain in San Francisco. Ledger Insights is a media partner.