Manufacturing Traceability with Blockchain

| Marcia Pohl

traceability with blockchain

Blockchain technology is already revolutionizing the banking industry, but it is also poised to impact the industrial world with manufacturing traceability.

More Than Money

Blockchain is a way of storing transactions in a secure, publicly distributed ledger. In banking terms, this means validated transactions can be made without the bank or credit card companies. This translates into virtually instant, secure transactions without fees, and the data is decentralized so it cannot be hacked. Every time a transaction is made, the data is exchanged on a peer-to-peer network and a new block is created in the chain.

Capture Critical Manufacturing Data

How does this affect the manufacturing world? Blockchain technology can provide raw material traceability while at the same time connecting all the stakeholders. For instance, let’s look at the food industry. A farmer grows wheat and sells his crop to a flour company. That flour company in turns sells the flour to a cake mix company. The cake mixes then get sold to a grocery store where you and I can buy them. If every time one of these transactions were made, a block of tamper-proof data was created using blockchain technology, we would be able to determine which farm grew the wheat in our cake mix.

Everyone in the chain has access to encrypted, tamper-free transactions.

Manufacturing Traceability with Blockchain

Traceability with Blockchain

Do you remember the romaine lettuce scare in November 2018? Imagine how much easier it would be to handle contaminations if blockchain technology was in effect. As a result of that scare, the FDA released a statement on “the new era of smarter food safety,” indicating the need for digitized traceability and Walmart is now requiring their leafy green suppliers to certify their shipments using blockchain technology.

According to Dr. William Wagner, associate chair of Accounting and Information Systems in the Villanova School of Business, “Blockchain technology is changing rapidly, in ways that we may not be able to anticipate yet, potentially disrupting whole industries. As a result, entrepreneurs and new companies are springing up to use blockchain in the hopes of making the world faster, cheaper and more efficient.”

The rapid change can already be felt, less than seven months after the romaine lettuce scare, the government is already acting. On June 13, 2019 the FDA announced a blockchain pilot program with IBM, Merck, KPMG and Walmart. It won’t be long before the entire food and beverage and pharmaceutical industries are going to be persuaded/required to do away with their beloved paper records and to embrace the new blockchain technology.

We Can Demystify Industry Trends

From blockchain to edge computing, we can keep you on top of the latest manufacturing trends. We offer a variety of process control solutions, applying technology to safeguard your operations and meet your performance requirements. Contact us today!