Nike And Other Major U.S. Retailers Examine Blockchain For Supply Chain Data Collection
The Chain Integration Pilot (CHIP) of the Auburn University RFID Lab in Alabama has issued a proof-of-concept whitepaper that attempts to illustrate the efficiency savings blockchain technology can unlock across the contemporary supply chain.
The proof-of-concept was created to encode, ingest, distribute, and store serialized data from various points throughout the supply chain on Hyperledger Fabric.
The pilot accumulated live data from brands like PVH Corp., Nike, and Herman Kay, and major United States retailers Kohls and Macy’s.
CHIP was begun in 2018 and professes to be the first supply chain project to combine the data pulled from RFID tags onto a blockchain network.
Blockchain as a supply chain data solution
The project examined data approximately 223,036 goods uploaded to a distributed ledger. Only one percent of data entries were uploaded by stores, with 87% of data arising from distribution centers, and the enduring 12% originating from the point of encoding.
CHIP decided that blockchain is a functional solution to difficulties of serialized data exchange within the supply chain. The report infers that the participating companies were “capable of recording transactions containing serialized data in a common language and shared that data with their appropriate trade partners.”
The paper recognizes “a tremendous amount of error and inefficiency in currency supply systems,” predicting that the removal of duplication and shrinkage in the supply chain could unfasten $181 worth of business opportunities.
Conventional supply chain tracking technologies deemed “antiquated.”
By distinction, the paper demonstrates that earlier existing networks for trading are built for “antiquated internet technologies,” and are not proper to manage the large volumes of serialized data that are generated throughout the contemporary supply chain.’
The team points to the absence of “an effective, industry-wide solution for exchanging serialized data between business partners,” notwithstanding the introduction of serialized data like RFID tags and QR codes over a decade ago.
Additionally, the report demonstrates that previous attempts to integrate infrastructure to collect data on masse’ across the supply chain have been “constrained by the industry-wide ineptitude for sharing serialized data.”
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