Topco, Mastercard to Use Blockchain for Food Tracking

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Topco, Mastercard to Use Blockchain for Food Tracking

By Abby Kleckler - 10/28/2019
Topco, Mastercard to Use Blockchain for Food Tracking
Food City is the 1st member-owner to pilot Mastercard's blockchain technology with Envisible's Wholechain traceability system

With an increasing desire for customers to know where their food comes from, Topco member-owners have a new solution through Mastercard's blockchain innovation. Mastercard's blockchain-based Provenance Solution will work in tandem with Envisible's Wholechain traceability system to increase this transparency. And it's Topco member-owner Food City that's testing it out first.

The southeastern grocer's pilot provides a better line of sight into ethical sourcing and environmental compliance of the seafood selection at its stores, including salmon, cod and shrimp to start.  

“Given consumers’ expectations for reliable information about the food that they eat, we’re excited to partner with Food City and Envisible on this trace and provenance solution pilot, and the promise of Envisible’s Wholechain solution,” said Scott Caro, SVP of fresh at Elk Grove Village, Ill.-based Topco.

The Mastercard Provenance Solution is industry-agnostic, and it's an exciting move to see it in action for food. It'll provide visibility into the product journeys, and a clear record of traceability that can ease any customer concerns, or, at the very least, provide them with additional information. 

“The sheer volume of global trade makes it difficult to track the journey and authenticity of food,” said Mark Kaplan, partner at Bloomfield Hills, Mich.-based Envisible. “We’re excited that Mastercard shares our vision and is driving consumer trust by bringing its significant expertise in using technology at scale with commercial-grade processing speeds, data flexibility and privacy, and security standards to an area that has previously been considerably opaque.”

Topco Associates is a $14 billion, privately held, member-owned company that provides aggregation, innovation and knowledge management solutions for its food industry member-owners and customers, including independent grocery retailers, wholesalers, and foodservice and pharmacy companies.

Food City is owned and operated by Abingdon, Va.-based  K-VA-T, which operates 131 retail outlets throughout southeast Kentucky, southwest Virginia, east Tennessee, Chattanooga and north Georgia, under Food City and Super Dollar Discount Foods banners. It's No. 35 on Progressive Grocer’s 2019 Super 50 list of the top grocers in the United States.