GS1®, the global business communications standards organisation, announced on 13th September 2017 a collaboration with IBM and Microsoft to leverage GS1 Standards in their enterprise blockchain applications for supply chain clients.
GS1's global standards for identification and structured data enable blockchain network users to scale enterprise adoption and maintain a single, shared version of the truth about supply chain and logistics events - increasing data integrity and trust between parties, and reducing data duplication and reconciliation.
Data stored or referenced by blockchain networks can be structured for shared communications and interoperability through the use of standards. For example, the GS1 and ISO open standards of Electronic Product Code Information Services (EPCIS) and Core Business Vocabulary (CBV) enable standardised exchange of data and item-level tracking.
''What attracts many organisations to blockchain technology is the possibility of sharing data across corporate boundaries while maintaining a high degree of rigor and accuracy,'' said Robert Beideman, Vice President - Retail, GS1. ''We hope to make this possibility a reality for businesses by working with dedicated technology and industry partners - and together promoting a common business language.''
IBM and Walmart have successfully used blockchain technology in a pilot test to enhance traceability of two food commodities in two different countries: mangoes in the U.S and pork in China.
''Our pilot projects in the U.S and China demonstrated that blockchain can strengthen existing food system safeguards by improving traceability. Using blockchain, we were able to track a product from retail shelf back through every stage of the supply chain, right to the farm gate, in seconds instead of days and weeks,'' said Frank Yiannas, Vice President of Food Safety, Walmart.
Read full press release here.