Blockchain by Kevin Hermann February 26, 2019
Global professional services firm Accenture is working with Mastercard, blockchain startup Everledger and humanitarian aid organization Mercy Corps in order to develop a blockchain-based “circular supply chain”. The company made the announcement on Tuesday. Accenture is an active user of digital ledger technology and blockchain. The new aim of the expects to employ the technology to play a key role in order to improve the circular supply chain.
A way to organize production so that the materials get recycled as much as possible, with discarded goods captured and components and materials re-used is called a circular supply chain. It encompasses every stage of the supply chain in an attempt to eliminate waste and boost the sustainability for the environment. The company’s blockchain app will enable its consumers to track the source of the goods, they are purchasing from and check if producer certified for sustainable practices. The consumer can also use the app to send tips to responsible producers as a reward in a form of a fiat transfer powered by Mastercard payment rails or blockchain-based token.
David Treat, the global blockchain lead at Accenture said that the company is planning to enroll small farms across the globe and enable them to register their certificates of ecologically conscious practices as their digital identity on the blockchain. He further added, Accenture is working with farmers’ associations in Africa and South America who might want to participate in the project. The venture will be maintaining cloud-based nodes on farmers behalf.
Ric Shreves, the senior advisor to the Technology for Development team at the NGO said that Mercy Corps is planning to contribute its experience of working with farmers communities around the world. He explained:
“In this stage of the project, we are exploring possible agricultural programs in our current program portfolio to pilot Circular Supply Chain. We think it will be best suited for boutique consumer goods, for example, single origin coffee, as opposed to bulk goods.”
Tread also added that Accenture has developed a prototype on Hyperledger Fabric and is finding more partners to onboard. Mastercard will contribute its experience blockchain and payment systems. However, the exact role of Mastercard is not yet finalized.
The executive vice president for humanitarian issues and development at Mastercard, Tara Nathan said in the announcement made by Accenture:
“Through our work with smallholder farmers in Kenya, India, Mexico and elsewhere, we’ve deployed digital solutions helping to drive commercially sustainable social impact – and we understand that collaboration is essential for this journey,”