- The Cardano Blockchain-based BeefChain is currently being tested with six family farms on almost 1,600 calves in Wyoming.
- BeefChain uses a “rancher-to-retail” approach, where traceability starts with the animal and can be traced through the entire supply chain to the end consumer.
In a new article in the ADA Forum, the Cardano Foundation has presented the Cardano blockchain based solution, the BeefChain. As Elliot Hill writes in the article, reducing meat consumption is one of the easiest ways to combat climate change and protect the environment in the short term. However, a lesser known but equally important measure is to ensure that the meat comes from sustainable and responsible sources.
This is the approach taken by the BeefChain project based in Wyoming (USA), which aims to create an effective traceability solution for the cattle industry using the Cardano blockchain.
Here, we explore what the issues are in the current cattle industry, discuss how tracing our meat from field to fork can empower primary producers, and discover how the Cardano blockchain and BeefChain are joining forces to make the beef supply chain more transparent.
According to Hill, there is a serious problem with fraud in the livestock and meat industry. Since the costs and prices of, for example, grass-fed beef and intensively farmed beef vary considerably, there have been repeated cases in recent years of inferior meat being sold as high quality or of references such as organic or grass meat being falsified at farm level.
To prevent this fraud, the BeefChain implements a “rancher-to-retail” approach, where traceability starts at the level of the individual animal at a cattle breeder or farmer and can be traced through the entire supply chain to the end consumer. In concrete terms, the traceability solution enables unique animal identification to verify the origin of cattle and sheep.
BeefChain’s technology is already being tested on nearly 1,600 calves as part of a partnership with six family farms in Wyoming. The project uses RFID chips and Internet of Things (IoT) devices to track and upload unique information about individual cattle to the blockchain. This allows verifiable proof of the origin of beef products to be provided via the blockchain.
These references can then be easily tracked and verified throughout the supply chain, allowing consumers to easily scan a product in-store and verify its origin all the way to the farm, ensuring ethical standards are met and eliminating the risk of buying fraudulent products.
Regarding BeefChain’s decision to use the Cardano ecosystem, Hill writes:
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BeefChain chose to work within the Cardano ecosystem in part due to IOHK’s close connections with Wyoming, but also to leverage the Atala TRAC supply-chain traceability solution built atop the Cardano blockchain. Atala TRACE empowers product owners to improve the visibility of their supply chain, bringing transparency to the end customer—rewarding primary producers who are committed to quality.
Already in July at the virtual summit, IOHK already shared initial details of its partnership with BeefChain.