Dole Plans to Utilize Food Tracking in All Divisions by 2025!
The Dole Food Company has a five-year blockchain plan for more substantial food safety.
Dole intends to launch blockchain product tagging and other “advanced traceability solutions” over its three business divisions – fresh vegetables, tropical fruits, and other diversified products – in an attempt to improve food safety operations by 2025.
The deadline, included in its sustainability report issued on Wednesday, outlines a system-wide redesign of how Dole, one of the world’s most enormous fruits and vegetable distributors, traces its food. Top of mind is enhancing the speed with which Dole can recognize trouble spots in the supply chain during recall of contaminated products, something it has operated on developing for years through its partnership with IBM Food Trust.
“Blockchain cuts the average time needed for food safety investigations from weeks to mere seconds,” the report said. “Produce that’s been logged via blockchain can be instantly traced back through the supply chain, giving retailers and consumer’s confidence in the event of a recall.”
Faster food tracing
Distributed data could make inquiries more bright, Dole stated in the report. It will also utilize that data to make customers more informed. Dole stated it intends to “eventually” draw back the curtain on its supply chain with scannable vegetable packages that exhibit the product’s “journey from farm to store shelf.”
This was something Dole told it had already been doing with its salad and fresh vegetable supply chain, according to the report. The company insisted it was already bestowing this information with retail consumers last year, although it created protections into its platform to limit various retailers from perceiving their competitors’ data.
Now, it plans to launch blockchain systems for other products soon. Dole’s plan does not provide a timeline on specific initiatives.
The 2025 aim comes approximately three years after Dole began experimenting with distributed ledgers as a member of IBM’s food blockchain consortium, the precursor to IBM Food Trust.
Dole appeared ready to continue that partnership through at least the next five years. The report notes fellow consortium member Walmart and IBM, the group’s cornerstone, are both operating with Dole to showcase blockchain’s potential “to bring about a step-change in food safety.” An IBM spokesperson refused to say on Dole’s strategic planning.
A spokesperson for Dole did not reply to a request for comment by press time.
Growing government use
Government food watchdogs have been taking notification of blockchain. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) upcoming “New Era of Smarter Food Safety” blueprint will uphold for the implementation of “blockchain technologies,” stated FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn in a statement.
Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response Frank Yiannas, who has performed a leading role in improving that FDA blueprint, earlier ran Walmart’s food safety operation where he worked jointly with the IBM Food Trust.
While at Walmart, he spearheaded an attempt to have leafy green providers utilize IBM Food Trust tools to track their goods end-to-end – also to more instantly track potentially contaminated foods.