Cardano Foundation develops metadata connector for Scantrust supply chain tracking
(Written by @ElliotHill of the Cardano Foundation)
In January 2020, during the World Economic Forum in Davos, the Cardano Foundation accepted an offer to implement a proof of concept integration with Scantrust — a global connected goods platform.
Throughout 2020, the Cardano Foundation’s Integrations Team has been working with Scantrust to develop a transactional metadata connector, which would use the Cardano blockchain as a public audit platform on which to verify supply chain data linked with physical products.
Here, we are pleased to share further details of this project with our community, as well as exploring the first proof of concept product to formally leverage transactional metadata on Cardano for supply chain tracking through Scantrust.
Before we discover how Cardano metadata can be used for product traceability, let’s take a closer look at Scantrust and how it provides supply chain solutions.
What is Scantrust?
Based in Lausanne, Switzerland, Scantrust provides digitalization and supply chain tracking to Fortune 500 enterprises and small to medium enterprises (SMEs) in more than 165 countries worldwide.
Working alongside companies with complex international supply chains such as Unilever, ExxonMobil and DuPont, Scantrust applies proprietary and patented tamper-resistant labels on connected products, using secured QR-codes. These QR-codes include a secure graphic in the center, that gives every QR-code anti-counterfeit features.
Consumers can scan these codes using their smartphones to easily access product-specific information. Scantrust’s software then traces and displays unique item information, such as origin, time in transit, and which actors have been involved in the supply chain journey.
For companies that depend on selling physical products, Scantrust enables active brand protection, supply chain awareness, and direct consumer engagement benefits. So, why is supply chain visibility important to companies selling physical products, and what problems does the physical goods supply chain currently face?
Why is supply chain visibility important?
The International Chamber of Commerce expects the global cost of counterfeit goods and piracy to reach US $4.2trn by 2022*. The most frequent counterfeiting cases include passing off fake goods as a reputable brand name or falsifying certification data such as geographic origin or organic status.
Family-owned artisanal businesses — crucial to the local economy in developing nations — are among those most deeply affected by this. Not only can it adversely affect their company’s reputation, but it can also dilute the market for their specialty goods.
Instead, through a functional and low-cost supply chain traceability solution, small and medium producers could prove the origin of their products, while also maintaining a fair market price as a genuine producer. An effective supply chain tracking solution, for instance on a blockchain, would also offer greater engagement touchpoints with the end consumer.
However, existing supply chain tracking solutions have typically been difficult to implement, easy to falsify, or expensive to maintain. Now, Scantrust’s enterprise-ready solution — the first of its kind to integrate with Cardano — is placing control back into the hands of SMEs, the foundation of developing nations’ economies.
Powered by the Cardano Foundation’s transactional metadata connector, Scantrust is collaborating with artisan wine producer Baia’s Wine. We discover below how Baia’s Wine is using this solution to bring transparency to their supply chain.
Baia’s Wine — A powerful proof of concept
Spanning three generations of expert winemakers, Baia’s Wine is nestled in the rolling hills of the Lesser Caucasus in the Imereti Region of Western Georgia, at an elevation of over 300 meters (984 feet) above sea level.
Producing award-winning and fully organic wines, the female-led vineyard is run by two sisters, Baia Abuladze and Gvanca Abuladze, together with their younger brother Giorgi. The elder sister, Baia, is a recipient of Forbes 30 under 30 Europe, and the family continues an 8,000-year-old Georgian winemaking tradition.
In addition to their Georgian customers, Baia’s Wine exports its organic wine to 12 international markets — and managing this large supply chain is a difficult and manually intensive process.
Through Scantrust, each bottle of wine produced by Baia’s Wine will carry a unique QR-identifier connected to metadata on the Cardano blockchain, allowing every bottle to be easily traced from the grape to the table. The proof of concept solution will allow for detailed data visualization built from every touchpoint along Baia’s Wine supply chain journey.
Baia’s Wine is a perfect pilot project for future product traceability solutions built using Cardano, with specialization in the fast-moving consumer goods sector — but this solution has the potential to be applied to a multitude of other industries.
In the future, a diverse set of products, including industrial supplies, can be given a Cardano on-chain digital identity for enhanced lifecycle management. The solution’s full implementation will be operational in early 2021.
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