• Blockchain Technology

Blockchain Technology (Photo : Getty Images)

To combat counterfeit food on Alibaba, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Blackmores, and Australia Post have teamed up with the e-commerce giant in using Blockchain technology.

The project aims to increase the traceability of food products, reduce the risk of fraud and ensure that Australia continues to be a trusted exporter of high-quality food.

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The initiative would help assure that genuine products are delivered safely to Chinese consumers, said Australia Post Executive General Manager Parcels and StarTrack CEO, Bob Black.

“We are delighted Alibaba has invited us to create an innovative platform, which will track food from paddock to plate, strengthening the supply chain,” Black said.

“The initiative will leverage our secure, reliable and fast service to support the authentication of Australian products bound for the Chinese market.

"Our food producers have a global reputation as being clean, green and safe provider of food and we are pleased to help deliver a solution to enhance the integrity of their produce,” he added.

New technologies, including Blockchain technology, will be explored in the project

Blockchain technology is a decentralized and highly available database. It can be used to obtain key details from suppliers about where and how their food was produced and map its journey across the supply chain. With its potential to enable up-to-date audits, the technology can increase transparency between producers and consumers.

Taking into account potential health risks linked with adulteration, food fraud is deemed as one of the biggest issues in the global food industry. Food fraud can also cause loss of trust from consumers and governments.

Australian products have recently been the targeted by counterfeiters. Among products which had cases of food fraud are health supplements, beer, wine, honey and cherries.

Since 2014, Australian businesses are now able to sell their products across Alibaba’s key platforms, including Tmall Global, Taobao Global and 1688.com. This is because of Australia Post’s relationship with Alibaba.

Last month, Australia Post and Alibaba have partnered to extend Australia Post online storefronts beyond China to Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia.

According to the agreement, the storefronts will operate on Lazada, South-East Asia’s leading eCommerce network. Alibaba holds a majority stake in Lazada.

The move will create a powerful online platform, allowing Australian companies to sell their products to millions of consumers across the region.

With Blockchain technology, Australian companies stand on the better ground against counterfeit food on Alibaba.