TE-Food has identified food fraud as a problem blockchain can solve. Food fraud has not dominated the major media headlines since the great EU horsemeat scandal of 2013. The 2013 horse meat scandal was a scandal in Europe in which foods advertised as containing beef were found to contain undeclared or improperly declared horse meat. As much as 100% of the meat content in some cases.
Michigan State University’s Food Fraud Initiative defines food fraud as “a collective term used to encompass the deliberate and intentional substitution, addition (or dilution), tampering, or misrepresentation of food, food ingredients, or food packaging; or false or misleading statements made about a product, for economic gain.”
While food fraud is not new, the motivation to adulterate or counterfeit food for financial gain is growing and a new solution is needed. Food fraud is estimated to cost the global food industry US$30 to $40 billion every year. The trustless nature of blockchain systems means this is an industry ripe for blockchain solutions. TE-Food have a live product that aims to combat food fraud through supply chain traceability and public availability of supply chain records.
The project is led by Hungarian entrepreuner Erik Arokszallasi and operates out of Albstadt, Germany. TE-FOOD is a food traceability ecosystem on blockchain. It aims to provide a solution for companies with any level of technological readiness to join and track their products. They provide their own blockchain but are also working toward interoperability with other chains. The project has identified WaltonChain, VeChain and IBM Food Trust as blockchains where supply chain data may be held.
TE-Food differs from many blockchain solutions in that it does not seek to provide a one size fits all solution. The project team recognise that different livestock or foodstuffs are subject to different supply chain processes. Consequently, they focus on developing a framework which enables implementation partners to quickly build custom processes and forms for different use cases. Their argument is that generalist solutions can’t follow the differences in the processes of supply chains. Therefore, they will be more of an overhead for companies, without providing incentives.
A Solution for all
In developed countries, most supply chain companies have some kind of traceability, farm management or. ERP system. Consequently, a traceability project is mostly about interfacing with them to interlink the information. In contrast in emerging countries, only a handful of larger food companies have such technological background. Most companies have no technology at all. TE-Food want to provide solutions for all of them for seamless integration.
The implication of this is simple; they cannot load their product with a requirement for expensive iOT hook-ups. This is borne out in the traceability methods. Te-Food focus on three primary data collection configurations. These are plastic security seals with QR code, plastic identification tags with RFID and paper-based label stickers with QR code.
TE-Food recognises different companies have different technological preparedness. Consequently they have a range of technologies to cater for the different levels of preparedness. Supply chain participants use B2B and Consumer mobile apps to scan identification materials and request/enter data about them.
End consumers can use also use a web based app to view the product history. With either the mobile or web app consumers can scan a QR code to view product history. This puts a lot of power back in the hands of the purchase decision maker through providing them with more info.
TE-Food also boast a specialized IoT API that enables the food companies to integrate data provided by their sensors to the traceability process. The API provides custom parameterizing possibilities regarding the data to be recorded on blockchain.
Last but not least there is their own decentralised data ledger. This component provides the credible possibility of verification of all data against cryptographically hashed and immutably stored data in blockchain. The end result being product history data that consumers can trust.
Project Development & Traction
TE-Food first appeared on crypto exchanges in March 2018. Unlike many early stage crypto projects TE-Food is well developed. It has a live product, customers and is tracking livestock. A little exploration of the traction to date reveals it to be highly impressive.
TE-Food have over 6000 customers and 34 million individuals have purchased products that have been tracked using the TE-Food product. They are tracking 18K pigs, 200K chickens and 2.5 million eggs every day. Furthermore 10 million individuals have received training in how to use TE-Food products. This augurs well for future adoption. They also list some impressive clients including Satra Foods, Japfa and Vissan.
TFD Token Trading
The TFD token is currently trading at approximately $0.0139 per token. There is a max supply of 1 billion TFD with 501,797,516 TFD in circulating supply giving a coin market cap of $7 million. Consequently, the project ranks 433rd on Coinmarketcap. To my mind this seems a significant undervaluation of the project given it’s traction to date. You can trade TFD on KuCoin and IDEX.
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