Sustainable and ethical procurement practices increase trust and confidence.

Winston Yong, Blockchain leader at IBM Consulting, reveals how blockchain can be a great tool for organizations to move towards more sustainable and ethical procurement practices.

Confidence in your procurement promise through trust and traceability

As enterprises, and their connected ecosystems, move toward more sustainable and ethical practices, the procurement function has been placed under even greater scrutiny.

On the front line of assuring the sustainable and ethical practices of its suppliers and partners, and by proxy itself, the procurement function needs to demonstrate providence by accessing greater transparency within the supply chain to establish the provenance of the goods and services they are purchasing.

What is Blockchain technology?

At the forefront of technologies that are providing a new level of transparency and traceability is blockchain. The concept of blockchain is very simple. Every ‘event’ has a block of information associated with it as it occurs.

As other related events occur subsequently, the associated event also has another block of information connected to it. If we were to chain all of this up cryptographically, you would be able to trace the history of the event to a high level of assurance. That is the basic concept of blockchain, which is shared, secure, INSIGHTS Confidence in your procurement promise through trust and traceability immutable, and configurable; changing the way that provenance and traceability in the supply chain has been determined, with incredible granularity.

Supply chain implications

A great example of how blockchain is increasing transparency and provenance in the supply chain is seen in the seafood industry. The seafood industry faces several challenges; primary amongst them is reputational: how fish is farmed. Trust is paramount with consumers that buy seafood. They want to know what the fish has been fed, for example, and this trust requires ever more information.

The Seafood Network is a blockchain-based network for the seafood industry. By joining the network and utilising the blockchain transparent supply, seafood companies can be more open about how the food is produced so the consumer will have a greater knowledge and understanding of that product.

The natural predisposition of blockchain to independently validate and securely track the provenance of products has seen companies, quietly and assuredly, apply blockchain technology to record events along many diverse distribution chains.

CPOstrategy – Issue 29

Read the full article from Winston Yong in Issue 29 of CPOstrategy.

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