The growth of Blockchain use cases points to the technology’s rapid adoption rate where early pioneers have gained verifiable merit of its overall benefits to the business. As the awareness of the term Blockchain spreads, its association to Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are expected to spread. Blockchain can fully function as a distributed application system without cryptocurrency. However, cryptocurrencies cannot exist without a Blockchain platform to support its operation.
More than benefits to the modern business, Blockchain has transcendent uses based on the improvement of society. Blockchain’s use cases for societal progress are based on foundational trust, which is a key factor in building its foundational application to modern technology.
Blockchain for Sustainable Food Production
One of Blockchain’s earliest use cases was focused on the step by step tracking of goods in the supply chain management. When it comes to food production, Blockchain is already being utilized to track food from growth to your plate by utilizing Blockchain’s transparent audit trails. As consumers are more generally conscious of what they eat, how it is processed and are more inclined to make food producers accountable, Blockchain in the food supply chain demands accountability, transparency and greater responsibility for the quality of food that we eat.
- Food Recalls – As globalization opened up our food supply sources, tracking commodities of meat, fruit and fish took months after a reported contamination outbreak. With Blockchain embedded into the system, each food component is tracked from source, processing, shipment and distribution. Last year, giants IBM and Walmart have embedded Blockchain into their pork meat supply in China and it allowed them to track or quickly isolate suspected shipment that have been compromised for contamination.
- Product Labeling – A compassionate society is an ideal society. The same applies for our meat and dairy sources where animal living conditions – ideally cruelty free from living conditions to their processing destination must account for humane methods as prescribed by governing laws. Platforms such as Where Food Comes From (WFCF) with Blockchain technology can track the meat production cycle and hold both farmers and product marketing accountable by allowing real time tracking of farm conditions, processing conditions and general labeling.
A Blockchain Built on Honesty
Honesty as a policy is a corporate value that Blockchain is augmenting and promoting through transparency of the recorded transactions under the distributed ledger technology. According to an IBM analysts in the Genius of Things: Blockchain and Food Safety with IBM and Walmart video blog, transparency is an agent that builds trust and goodwill across all parties: “a shared, unalterable ledger for recording the history of transactions. It increases trust, accountability and transparency across business networks.”
If we put in the factor that are smart contracts, transparency of the process becomes even more tamper-proof as agreements are executed by agreeing parties without biases – often coming from centralized authorities. This situation builds mutual understanding, trust and multi-lateral unison across all parties.
When applied to societal sectors such as business, finance and insurance, Blockchain enables better trust scenarios by facilitating more transactions at a never before seen pace. IBM’s Global Financing reported that transactions were able to save as much as 75 percent of the time required to mediate transaction disputes among 4,000 partners and suppliers using a Blockchain system geared for decentralization.
Blockchain for Modern Governance
Governments are the foundation of order and societal decorum. Blockchain’s role is to help government services to modernize their capacity for optimal delivery of services to a growing population that is built on democratized transparency.
In Canada, the non-profit research organization, the Conference Board of Canada released a detailed report about Blockchain’s capability to reshape the government in terms of services done digitally.
In the digital age, digital identity will reshape our personal privacy that is built on efficiency. Verified.Me, a platform built on IBM Blockchain that is working with a number of digital identity providers are laying the foundation for identity interoperability that allows seamless harness of digital identities for government services, health insurance and personal financing.
With Canada being on the Blockchain discussion, its IT capability to modernize its governance is now in the global discussion talks as a blueprint for Blockchain that is building governments.