Blockchain technology is a hot topic in the logistics industry and many companies are utilizing it in their everyday operations. In our blog, “Exploring Blockchain Capabilities-Infographic”, we went over the basics of blockchain to understand what it is and how it is done. In order to understand its practical application, the value it is adding to companies, and the visibility given to the customers, this blog will walk through 3 value adding functions of the blockchain. Understanding the true quality of products While the world has become smaller in terms of communication, sourcing, and manufacturing, the supply-chain has become much more complex. With that, knowing where your products came from and how they were made is hardly accessible. With blockchain technology, this is no longer the case as the source origin for products can be seen. One widely known example of this is with Walmart. Walmart has utilized blockchain technology to show pork sourcing in China. The permanent records recorded show the exact origin of the meat while also tracking the full process to get it to the store shelves (processing, storage, distribution, etc). This allows people to completely understand where their products came from, and in turn, the quality of those products. Monitoring Unethical or Illegal Activity Consumers and companies are becoming more aware of unethical and illegal activity that has happened in different companies around the world. Investigations and news reports have revealed many of these stories causing consumers and companies to avoid contributing to anything that may add to the unethical or illegal activity. This awareness has given companies a new responsibility of monitoring their supply chain and ensuring that these activities are avoided. Blockchain technology keeps these processes in check and gives companies a reliable record by which to ensure ethical operations. De Beers, a world leading diamond miner, manufacturer, trader, and retailer, has utilized blockchain technology. They have done this too ensure customers of not only the quality/legitimacy of their diamond, but also that the diamond sourcing does not go toward financing violent activities (“blood diamonds”). Accountability and consensus With companies utilizing blockchain technology, there will be no room for debate and multiple parties with have visibility over its ledger. With all parties having access to this ledger, companies will be held accountable as to ensure that they continue ethical and quality operations. Not only is there accountability, but there is also a consensus amongst all parties. The blockchain records are permanent and cannot be erased from the ledger, therefore, there is no ability to cover something up. With multiple eyes and permanent records on the ledger, transparency for the customer has never been better.