Alibaba to Tackle Counterfeit Food in China With Blockchain

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PricewaterhouseCoopers, Blackmores, and Australia Post have joined up with e-commerce giant Alibaba to fight counterfeit food products being sold across China by using Blockchain technology.

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The initiative will increase the traceability of food products, reducing the risk of fraud and ensuring Australia remains a trusted exporter of high quality food. Australia Post Executive General Manager Parcels and StarTrack CEO, Bob Black, said the project would help guarantee genuine products arrive safely into the hands of Chinese consumers

“We are delighted Alibaba has invited us to create an innovative platform, which will track food from paddock to plate, strengthening the supply chain,” Mr Black said.

“The initiative will leverage our secure, reliable and fast service to support the authentication of Australian products bound for the Chinese market. Our food producers have a global reputation as being a clean, green and safe provider of food and we are pleased to help deliver a solution to enhance the integrity of their produce.”

The project will explore new technologies, including blockchain technology – a decentralised and highly available database – which could obtain crucial details from suppliers about where and how their food was grown and map its journey across the supply chain. The technology has the potential to enable up-to-date audits, increasing transparency between producers and consumers.

Food fraud is known to be one of the biggest issues facing the global food industry, considering the potential health risks associated with adulteration and loss of trust from consumers and governments. In recent years counterfeiters have targeted popular Australian products such as health supplements, beer and wine, honey and cherries.

Australia Post’s relationship with Alibaba has already enabled Australian businesses to sell their products across Alibaba’s key platforms since 2014, including Tmall Global, Taobao Global and 1688.com.

The latest partnership comes after Australia Post and Alibaba signed an agreement last month to extend Australia Post online storefronts beyond China to Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia. The storefronts will operate on South-East Asia’s leading eCommerce network Lazada, which Alibaba has a majority stake, creating a powerful online platform for Australian businesses to sell products to the millions of consumers across the region.

 

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About Richard Kastelein

Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST 2015), a partner at ICO services collective Token.Agency ($750m+ and 90+ ICOs and STOs), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) – Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of some two dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1500 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat. Irish Tech News put him in the top 10 Token Architects in Europe.

Kastelein has an Ad Honorem - Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of Blockchain at China's first Blockchain University in Nanchang at the Jiangxi Ahead Institute of Software and Technology. In 2018 he was invited to and attended University of Oxford's Saïd Business School for Business Automation 4.0 programme.  Over a half a decade experience judging and rewarding some 1000+ innovation projects as an EU expert for the European Commission's SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor and as a startup judge for the UK government's Innovate UK division.

Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London (5x), Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, Prague, San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara (2x), Shanghai, Singapore (3x), Tel Aviv, Utrecht, Venice, Visakhapatnam, Zwolle and Zurich.

He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He's written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and Virgin.com, and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French. A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart, Kastelein's professional career has ranged from political publishing to TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to marketing and more as he's travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian expatriate living around the world. In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he's raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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