Latitude 28° Produce leans on powerful technology tools like e-commerce, advanced data analysis, augmented reality, and blockchain to allow Australian agro-producers to sell their products to Chinese consumers. They market their products as interactable, engageable and traceable, so that consumers in the PRC have a more positive and trustworthy produce and grocery shopping experience.
L28 approached WPIC in 2018 for assistance with several projects in the Chinese market. This case study will focus on the blockchain traceability project that they tasked WPIC with.
At the time of the project, the supply chain between meat products from Australia (highly desirable and sought after in the Chinese market) did not provide certainty for Chinese consumers.
When high quality beef would be processed and shipped from Australia, those packages would end up at the same facilities as beef from, for instance, Uruguay, Brazil, the PRC and other countries, many of whom had much less stringent supply chain and agriculture policies.
This meant that high quality beef would end up on store shelves next to low grade produce, with the customer not knowing the difference when purchasing, despite the Australian sticker on the packaging. It was estimated that close to 50% of the beef in China that was marked as Australian was, in fact, not.
Not only did this threaten the value of the Australian beef arriving in China, but it also had the potential to harm customers who thought they were purchasing a high quality product but were eating lower quality produce. Chinese consumers were aware of these supply chain issues and would regularly question the authenticity of the items they were consuming that were branded as Australian.
L28 and WPIC developed a solution to this problem, using blockchain technology:
- L28 would cut the beef into retail sized products at its Australian facilities
- L28 would package the retail sized beef into secure packaging. Each package would have individual blockchain-based verification built into the label
- L28 would package and ship the products to their B2C distribution facility inside the PRC. Packages and products were verified to be authentic, via blockchain traceability, at various points over the course of the supply chain
- WPIC developed a smartphone app that would allow customers to scan each package at the grocery store and get verification, via blockchain, that the product was, in fact, authentic
The L28 blockchain database is an unalterable history of all transactions, including Australian Government product verification. Today, the final buyer can access a complete record of information and trust that the information they are receiving is accurate and complete.
After completion of the project, customers who purchased L28 beef products were given unprecedented confidence that their groceries were high quality, authentic Australian beef. As a result of the project, L28 not only strengthened their brand in the market, but also helped to ensure the health and well-being of their customers.
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