Carrefour has introduced what the retailer says is 'Europe's first food blockchain', with the technology set to be applied to eight product lines by the end of this year.
The blockchain system is already being used for free-range Carrefour Quality Line Auvergne chickens, and the retailer plans to extend this to other animal- and vegetable-based product lines, including eggs, cheese, milk, oranges, tomatoes, salmon and ground beefsteak by the close of 2018.
'The launch of blockchain technology marks an important milestone in the implementation of the Carrefour 2022 transformation plan,' the retailer wrote in a statement, adding that the technology promises customers full traceability of its products.
What Is A Blockchain?
A blockchain is a secure digital database that cannot be falsified and in which all information sent by its users is stored.
Each party along the chain can input its own traceability data to create a fuller picture as to a product's origins.
'Blockchain technology will bring numerous benefits to the food sectors: it will meet consumers' increasing need for transparency; for breeders, it's a means to showcase what they produce and their expertise,' wrote Carrefour.
Customers will be able to access the information gathered through the blockchain process via a QR code on a product's packaging.
In the case of Carrefour chicken, customers can access information on where the animal was reared, the type of feed used, and a myriad of other options.
"This is a first in Europe, and will provide consumers with guaranteed complete transparency, as far as the traceability of our products is concerned," explains Laurent Vallée, Carrefour's general secretary and head of quality and food safety.
© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.