Vermont Regulators Partners With Trace To Track Hemp With Ethereum
Vermont regulators will trace hemp production on the ethereum mainnet in association with the cannabis supply chain blockchain startup Trace. The five-year deal declared on Monday by Vermont’s Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets (VAAFM), is a production-ready solution for each level of the hemp trade, stated Trace CEO, Josh Decatur.
Commencing in March, farmers, and processors will begin putting all connected crop data into the Trace system, which operates on ethereum.
It is the first time a state regulatory agency has determined to run with the ethereum mainnet.
The two-year-old company, based in Vermont’s capital Montpelier, has developed an app user can share details by, and gas fees for handling transactions are transferred onto the users, in this case, the state government.
“Everyone is deriving value from innate blockchain tech – namely the security that comes with public permissionless blockchain technology,” he stated.
Vermont’s regulators told this is the first full-scale government licensing and registration system that pairs blockchain with the nascent hemp industry. Hemp was legalized nationally in the 2018 Farm Bill, but Vermont’s program operates under the 2014 edition.
A cannabis strain utilized in the textile industry, hemp describes a small but expanding slice of Vermont’s agriculture sector. According to Stephanie Smith, VAAFM’s Hemp Program manager, the Green Mountain State had 1,000 registered hemp farmers in 2019 with nearly 9,000 acres of farmland, as well as 300 processors.
“It’s important to understand what’s being grown, where it’s being grown, and where it’s going after being harvested,” she said.
The mini-boom foreshadowed VAAFM’s call for a hemp registration system. Trace, whose CEO has roots in Northern California grow scene, beat out the competition. Being based in Vermont did not hurt either.
“We spent the last couple of years finding innovative ways to hone a product that could meet the tracking and data requirements of a state agency,” Decatur said.
His Vermont-based team had been developing “seed-to-shelf” tools for other sectors of the cannabis supply chain, like cannabidiol (CBD) products. The company designed patented software, an app, and a web portal to document where, when and to whom a plant and its derivative products move.
Trace’s solution relies on the ethereum network. At 15 transactions per second, the network is merely a remedy for industrial users moving extensive amounts of data. But that does not matter for the low-frequency hemp lot farmers who, Decatur stated, only send three to four transactions per year.
“The use case that we’ve applied the tech to fits into the performance restrictions of ethereum,” he said.
According to Smith, Trace’s registration system should be live by the end of March, in time for the commencement of the outdoor growing season in June.