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Technology

Albert Heijn Introduces Blockchain Mapping For Orange Juice Supply Route

Albert Heijn has introduced a blockchain mapping system to trace the origin of its private-label orange juice, in collaboration with its supplier, Refresco.

A QR code in the packaging will enable customers to learn about the journey of the product from its source of origin to the supermarket.

A Transparent Supply Chain

The move is aimed to create transparency between the company and its consumers, regarding the origin of its products.

Marit van Egmond, commercial director Albert Heijn said, "We know all the steps that our products in the chain go through to ensure that they are produced with respect for people, animals, and the environment.

"We also want to show these steps to our customers, open and transparent."

It is the first time that the company and Refresco, are embarking on a project of this kind for orange juices.

Han de Groot, CEO of Rainforest Alliance welcomed the move, saying, "More and more consumers want to know where their food comes from and how it is made, so it's great that customers can follow the route of their orange juice. We encourage other parties to follow this example."

The Technology

The blockchain has been developed in collaboration with technology partner Supply Chain Information Management (SIM).

The chain starts at the orange groves in Brazil owned by the Louis Dreyfus Company (LDC), where the fruits are harvested. This determines the quality marks the growers have for food safety and sustainability.

The blockchain also gathers other information about the oranges, such as the picking period and degree of sweetness

Customers also have the option to pay a compliment to the growers with the 'Like2Farmer' feature.

The managing director of Refresco Benelux, Maarten Kusters, said, "This is a unique way to bring the grower, processor, bottler, retailer and consumer together, and to make the entire process of making fruit juice transparent."

Sustainability Efforts

Albert Heijn has collaborated with regular growers and suppliers for years to source around 11,000 of its own-brand products.

All oranges sourced for Albert Heijn orange juices from LDC Juice in Brazil are Rainforest Alliance certified.

These farms help protect nature and contribute positively to better working and living conditions for farmers and their families.

© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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