Blockchain technology is becoming increasingly used in the food supply chain to improve traceability, but the trade-offs between implementation challenges and achievable impact remain unclear. Danish researchers have undertaken a study on six cases of blockchain-based technologies in the food supply chain by applying a technology assessment framework that distinguishes between four different components of a technology: technique, knowledge, organisation, and product. The results highlight how blockchain is not a stand-alone-technology, but rather one element in a system of technologies. While blockchain-based technologies are expected to bring a variety of impacts, only some are directly attributable to the blockchain element such as increased transparency, traceability, and trust. Other impacts such as improved data management are a side-effect of digitising non-digital processes. The long-term impacts of implementing blockchain in the food chain are not yet proven, and require further study.
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