Walmart Requires Suppliers to Implement Blockchain Tracking System

The US retail company Walmart eyes Blockchain technology for optimizing its tracking system operations. The company required its leafy green suppliers to implement the tracking system based on Blockchain in order to speed up the workflow.

25 September, 2018 – One of the US retail giants, Walmart along with its branch, Sam’s Club, which is a membership-only retail warehouse club, are reportedly planning to require suppliers of leafy greens to their shops to execute a farm-to-store tracking system that is based on Blockchain.

Walmart Blockchain Tracking System Developed by IBM

It is reported that the planned end-to-end tracking system will be based on distributed ledger technology (DLT) that is developed by a computing company IBM. According to a number of online reports, Walmart will require suppliers to put the Blockchain technology to use by September 2019.

Frank Yiannas, Walmart’s Vice President of Food Safety, stated that the company will require a similar tracking system “for other fresh fruit and vegetable providers within the next year.” The company stated that more than 100 companies will eventually be required to execute IBM’s Blockchain service.

Walmart also claimed that Blockchain technology implementation will “dramatically [improve] efficiency.” Frank Yiannas carried out a tracking test with sliced mangoes. He asked his team to track the product back to the farm. He stated:

“It took them nearly seven days, as the methods of tracking today are antiquated — sometimes done with pencil and paper.”

Walmart stated that thanks to the Blockchain technology, this process can take just 2.2 seconds, thus saving them tons of valuable time.

US CDC to Use Blockchain to Control Foodborne Illnesses

According to online reports, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) discussed the methods of improving product traceability with Walmart. The CDC aims to help health authorities track, manage and control the outbreaks of foodborne illnesses.

Earlier this year, authorities recorded five deaths and a number of hospitalizations related to the outbreak of E.Coli virus in the US. Officials estimated that there were 200 people infected as a result of that outbreak.

Not so long time ago, Walmart filed technology-related patents for a number of different Blockchain applications. This included the improvement of secure deliveries, a healthcare information system and methods for managing smart appliances.

This June, Walmart along with nine other companies has collaborated with IBM. The alliances looked into the idea of launching a Blockchain-based system for tracking food via its supply chain worldwide.

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