海量集團執行長 洪弘毅（Lewis Hung）
中國國際科技促進會 研究員 雍旻（Ari Min Yong）
Blockchain technology has attracted widespread attention in recent years, especially because of its decentralization, encryption, tamper-proof, and consensus mechanism, establishing it as an effective tool to mitigate and reduce system risks to ensure the safe storage of data. With the widespread adoption of the Internet of Things (IoT) within the logistics of the food industry, blockchain technology has been adopted in various sectors. Studies have shown that adopting blockchain technology in the supply chain can save up to 15% of administrative management costs. However, despite the significant potential of blockchain, its widespread implementation in the global supply chain faces major challenges in terms of standardization, platform development, business models, and regulatory frameworks. This paper will introduce the relevant applications of blockchain technology in transportation within the food industry.
The integration of the Internet of Things (IoT) and blockchain has the potential to create a more transparent information system in food transportation, addressing the problems of cold chain breaks and traceability in the food industry. IoT possesses the powerful ability to record the entire transportation process from product processing to retail stores in a shared, transparent, tamper-proof, and automated way. By tracking storage conditions and routes during transportation, consumers are provided with additional reliable ways to verify the food transportation process, significantly enhancing the transparency of the method.
Food safety issues can be attributed to a variety of factors, of which environmental pollution and temperature control are the most pertinent. Pollution may threaten various stages, including the origin, manufacturing process, or transportation environment. Moreover, temperature control is also a critical factor in whether food spoils or not; thus, the record and traceability of the entire cold chain are instrumental in ensuring food safety.
Blockchain can be divided into three main categories: public chains, consortium chains, and private chains. Public chains are open to the public, such as the highly popular cryptocurrencies Bitcoin and Ethereum. In contrast, private chains involve transactions in which only a specific group of people can reach a consensus on governing rules. In a public chain, the entire system is completely transparent, and anyone has access to the rules, mechanisms, and transaction records on the chain. Once information is recorded on the blockchain, it becomes extremely difficult to modify or delete. Thus, public chains have a number of advantages, including an immutable distributed ledger, and they allow participants to take any action, reflecting the decentralized nature of blockchain technology.
Because permission is required to enter, private chains are more restrictive. Private chains offer companies and organizations a way to quickly integrate into financial systems or supply chains while restricting access to specific parties. Businesses can define permission operations for all relevant parties. Additionally, private blockchains can combine multiple layers of data access to maintain the confidentiality of certain data. Therefore, private blockchains can ensure a higher level of security, privacy, and performance. Blockchain applications in the food industry primarily use private chains, with only participants in the food supply chain having access to the system, allowing them to record information related to food and food containers. This data is shared among all participants in the supply chain and is submitted to consumers for review and verification.
From a logistics perspective, the main applications of blockchain and IoT technology in the Taiwan food supply chain industry can be categorized into several key areas:
Here are some specific examples of how blockchain and IoT technologies are being used in the food chain industry in Taiwan:
Blockchain is rapidly integrating with IoT technology. As costs decrease and economies of scale form, blockchain-IoT integration applications will become the technical mainstream of the future Taiwanese food supply chain industry. How to make good use of this technology is also an unavoidable challenge for the industry.