The UK Food Standards Agency (FSA) has announced a successful blockchain pilot to regulate compliance within the local food sector.
The trial took place at an unidentified cattle slaughterhouse, where data on the food supply chain was shared with the FSA.
Marking the first time the UK has used dispersed ledger technology for acquiescence purposes within the food sector, the FSA’s head of innovation, Sian Thomas, called it an exciting development.
While the latest pilot gave the FSA and slaughterhouse permission to access data, an additional pilot that is due in July will let the farmers themselves give permission data on animals from their farm.
Following the successful trials, the FSA mentioned that the next stage will be to repeat it in other plants, while recognizing that permanent use would need to be industry-led, due to the present data model being incomplete to the collection and communication of inspection results.
Blockchain’s potential to transform for the food supply chain has been touted for some time. In August last year, IBM announced a partnership with 10 food firms, including Nestle, Unilever, and Dole, to explore blockchain applications in the food sector.
In 2016, government chief scientist Mark Walport called on Whitehall to look at how distributed ledger technology could recover public services and increase efficiency. Since then, the use of blockchain has developed across government, but mostly through pilots.
Last year, HM Revenue and Customs piloted the use of blockchain at the UK border, and the Department for Work and Pensions has previously trialled the technology to allow assistance applicants to use a mobile app to know their welfare payments.
In November 2017, think-tank Reform recommended that the government must make use of blockchain technology for identity guarantee services across the public sector, the news was confirmed in the recent report of blockchain technology.[The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views and/or the official policy of the website. ]