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Alibaba Battles “Food Fraud” with the Blockchain

To combat rising allegations of fraudulently labeled or marketed food products being offered on their online marketplace, e-commerce giant Alibaba and PwC are creating a “Food Trust Framework” through a blockchain platform. This will enable participants across the entire supply chain to monitor and track shipments in real time, and potentially identify any fraudulent activity.

This new initiative will help specifically combat food fraud which, according to the National Center for Food Protection and Defense, is “the deliberate and intentional substitution, addition, tampering, or misrepresentation of food, food ingredients, or food packaging; or false or misleading statements made about a product, for economic gain.” This type of fraud has resulted in deaths of people in a number of nations, which is why the ability to identify fraudulent products is important to Alibaba and the partners in this initiative.

Though current participants in the initiative include Chinese and Australian companies, Maggie Zhou, managing director of Alibaba Group Australia and New Zealand, argues that “the signing of today’s agreement is the first step in creating a globally respected framework that protects the reputation of food merchants and gives consumers further confidence to purchase food online.” There is potential for American companies to join this agreement to also utilize blockchain platforms to better monitor their supply chains.

Read more at CoinDesk