Traceability has become increasingly critical as globalization takes root. Nowadays, one product can have a very long and complex manufacturing and supply chain that can span several countries and regions. A company in Germany could be assembling parts made by a company in China, which in turn gets its raw materials from Brazil. The entire process needs to be traced to ensure the quality of all the products. While several solutions have been developed in the past, they all fade in comparison to the efficiency that blockchain traceability has introduced.
Traceability is the ability to trace the history, application or location of an entity by means of recorded identification. It’s as crucial for business owners as it is for consumers. According to some estimates, U.S. companies lose $600 billion a year to counterfeit goods, a challenge that blockchain traceability can eradicate. Consumers also get to track the goods they consume, giving them confidence in the brands they consume.
Blockchain traceability works in tandem with other technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT). IoT sensors are placed on goods so that they can collect data from these goods and aggregate this data into information that is then stored on the distributed ledger.
Once the information is recorded on the blockchain, it becomes a permanent record as the blockchain is immutable. The transparent nature of the blockchain also allows the users to easily access information. For instance, by simply scanning a QR code, you can track the beef in a supermarket to its origin and get to see all the processes it has undergone.
The immutable nature of the blockchain also ensures that illegal activities are easily recognizable and easier to trace. Any record on the blockchain is permanent,