As announced this week, the Australian government is supporting a blockchain project for the sustainable cultivation of sugar. This is intended to secure the supply chains of sugar cane imports into the country and thus guarantee origin and sustainable production. Australia is one of the largest sugar producers and the second most important exporter of this sweet good worldwide. The project aims to meet the growing demand for sustainable sugar, especially from the beverage industry.
Blockchain on the advance Down Under
Productivity, sustainability and profitability – these are the pillars on which the Sustainable Sugar Project wants to place Australian sugar production for the future. A blockchain solution will help in the future. As part of its innovation campaign Smartcane Best Management Practice (BMP), the project aims to secure the supply chains of sugar production in the southern continent with the help of a blockchain. The aim is to place origin and production methods on a secure footing.
The project is supported by the Australian government. The initiative, led by the regional agricultural association Queensland Cane Growers Organization (‘Canegrowers’), is now receiving a financial injection of around 1.7 million US dollars from the Australian treasury. This is what Foodnavigator-Asia reports this week.
“The Sustainable Sugar Project aims to develop […] transparency in the market for sustainably produced sugar. By participating in Smartcane BMP and using the blockchain, Canegrowers not only wants to secure guarantees of origin, but also increase market access and offer greater value to producers and customers”.
A spokeswoman for the Queensland association describes the use of the blockchain as a means of increasing customer confidence. The Australian state produces 95 percent of Australian sugar.
“The [Blockchain] technology creates security for the sustainability of our sugar. By ensuring that farmers produce sustainably, they can achieve top prices,
Agriculture Minister David Littleproud underlines the motivation behind the promotion.
Demand for sustainable sugar on the rise
With annual trade revenues of almost two billion US dollars and an export quota of up to 85 percent, Australia is not only one of the world’s largest sugar producers, but also the second most important exporter of this sweet good after Brazil.
Worldwide, the demand for sustainably grown sugar is currently rising, especially from the ranks of the beverage industry. While Coca-Cola, for example, wants to cover its sugar demand entirely from sustainable sources by 2020, the Ministry of Agriculture now wants to close this gap by promoting the Sustainable Sugar Project.
“As the demand for sustainably produced food increases, this project will help to increase exports and create better market access, explains Minister Littleproud.
Meanwhile, blockchain technology is on the advance in Down Under, and not only in the books of the authorities. While the government in Canberra has been trying to adapt various loopholes in the law since last year and is supporting blockchain projects in the energy sector, for example, the Australian Commonwealth Bank (CBA) announced last week that it had reached a milestone so far. On the basis of an Ethereum blockchain, the bank succeeded in shipping 17 tons of almonds from Victoria, Australia, to Hamburg.
In addition, the government sealed a joint partnership with the software giant IBM. With the help of 740 million US dollars from the Australian budget, the latter is now to research the possibilities of blockchain use in the area of data security.