Within the food industry, products in the dairy value chain sector are under constant scrutiny due, in part, to a large number of cases worldwide of food-borne illness and food contamination related to products derived from dairy.
Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) says, However, “About 93% of the samples (5,976 out of 6,437) surveyed were found to be “absolutely safe” for human consumption,” “41% of the “safe” samples still fell short on at least one quality parameter.”
To address the general problem of trust deficiency, countries such as India – the world’s largest milk producer and Asia’s largest net exporter of dairy products – are implementing new dairy processing and quality assurance approaches.
The present case study outlines the partnership between the Agricultural Dairy Products Brand Milk Mantra and the Blockchain Technology Provider TraceX technologies.
The solution addresses consumers’ first concern about food safety in the dairy industry while enabling every agent of the dairy value chain to exchange democratic data securely.
The brand is
known for its Ethical Milk Sourcing Programme and its focus on transparency in
payment and pricing. It ensures the farmers sustainable livelihoods with
Its Flagship Brand for Products is Milk Moo & Moo Shake for milk and
milk-based products like buttermilk, probiotic yogurt curd, cottage cheese, and
flavored milk beverages.
- Consumers’ need to ensure provenance for agri-food and dairy products is no longer negotiable.
- Among Agrifoods, there’s a lack of regulatory compliance and increasing quality concerns.
- Unlike agriculture, milk is a smallholder farmer initiative, with each farmer coming on board as a collection point where the infrastructure is usually very minimal.
- Milk Mantra already has a digitalization process for its dairy value chain. The overall challenge is to show how companies like Milk Mantra can integrate Blockchain into their dairy processing operations to achieve full traceability—starting at their various collection points.
Traceability Solutions for the dairy sector
The increasing demand for food safety from the consumers and the pressures that brands face to enhance consumer trust necessitates the requirements of a robust traceability system in the dairy sector.
TraceX blockchain solution to Milk Mantra’s process
- Currently, at the collection points, first mile data such as farmers, location, milk quantity, milk quality, date/time are captured via Stellapps.
- The same information coming from across different collection points is aggregated at the Bulk Milk Chillers, thus ensuring history and details about each of the products and their changing state is recorded on the Blockchain.
- Further on, at the processing plants, additional details and delivering the newly transformed product such as packaged Milk, Paneer, and Dahi, are registered on the Blockchain via the interfaces to the existing systems, thus creating corresponding assets on the Blockchain.
- Before the final products are packed and leave the plant, scanning labels are either pre-printed on the packaging material or printed during the packaging stage and affixed on the final product.
- The QR Code /Trace ID printed on the packaging will contain a reference to the final digital asset where the history of the products can be checked.
- Consumers can use a mobile app to read trace codes to track the provenance of the milk.
Full enablement of Blockchain for Milk Mantra value chain will allow to:
- Capture the digital journey of the milk as it moves through the dairy value chain in real-time.
- Connect every actor involved to securely exchange data that can eventually be verified and auditable, which will lead to mutual accountability and transparency.
- Bring multiple dairy value chain actors onto a platform that will enable the exchange and verification of auditable data.
- Apart from the provenance of the food, Blockchain can leverage data about the farmer and different actors to implement multiple use cases, such as to provide credit access to funds or access to credit for the farmers.
The pressing need to upgrade safety efforts, especially in the agri-food sectors, is being met by solution approaches such as the one offered by TraceX Technologies.
Srikumar Misra, Founder and Executive Chairman, Milk Mantra says,” ‘FoodAssure’– architected by Milk Mantra and TraceX Technologies is India’s first blockchain powered end-to-end food traceability platform resting on a solid foundation of our core purpose of bringing transparency and the highest quality adherence. The platform enables access to critical information about the origins of the food & the processes that it undergoes, from producers to consumers and everyone in between-in less than a minute!
This solution not only improves the dairy value chain and the many lives that depend on it, at the same time, is reshaping concepts such as safety, accountability, and transparency.