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Blockchain in the logistics industry: How Hyperledger Sawtooth works for supply chains

Like in many other spheres where data and transactions play an important role, Blockchain can be successfully applied in the logistics industry too. From all information carefully recorded in the ledger to safe data exchanges, the technology has high potential to innovate the supply chain management.

In a high-competitive business world, entrepreneurs constantly face such issues as perishable goods, fraud, gray market, poor traceability of goods, product/good/food losses, and much more. Blockchain can become a solution to all of these challenges.

By using Blockchain supply chain solutions you can take advantage of enhanced delivery,  secure financial transactions, and continuous tracking of goods, products, materials, food, and vehicles. Since supply chains take the center stage in various industries, companies of different domains can reduce operating costs and ensure security with Blockchain.


Where Blockchain supply chain solutions can be used


  • Shipping, Transportation, Vehicles
  • Food and Beverages
  • Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals
  • Aviation
  • Precious Stones
  • Arts
  • Electric power systems


1. Shipping, Transportation, Vehicles

Blockchain solutions for shipping can provide an immutable record of all necessary data related to the quantity and transfers of things – like pallets, trailers, containers, etc. – as they move between supply chain nodes.

In logistics, Blockchain can be used for tracking trade-related documents, data exchanges, purchasing orders, and monitoring goods. What’s more, certifications or certain properties of physical products can be assigned or verified through Blockchain.

With Blockchain, you can share information about the manufacturing process, assembly, delivery, and maintenance of products with suppliers and vendors, while the data about the cargo can be accessed remotely. Any number of participants can reach from any touchpoint.

It is known that cryptocurrencies transfers offer lower fees. Vehicle manufacturers, for instance, can use bitcoin/ethereum/litecoin/etc. to pay suppliers.

Other outstanding advantages appear when using Blockchain and IoT together. One suggestion is to manage rentals of driverless cars with the help of Ethereum smart contracts. A smart contract can be used for checking and carrying out of rental payments. Also, click here to find out how to secure an IoT ecosystem with Blockchain technology.

2. Food and Beverages

Also, Blockchain supply chain solutions are used for recording product status at each stage of production as well as for tracing each product to its source.

For instance, you can apply Blockchain to track sales or responsible sourcing of beef, pork meat, poultry, fish, etc. in a country, or to determine if a food product is an organic and fair trade.

A Blockchain-based system can let a company see where each piece of meat comes from, information about food processing and storage, and sell-by date.

Blockchain and IoT technologies can link physical goods to serial numbers, barcodes, digital tags like RFID, then after scanning fruits, with the special app, employees can see which place the fruit came from and where it’s stored.

Sensors can monitor such parameters as temperature, humidity, and vibration, and send all data to Blockchain where it is stored and recorded. If a storage condition deviates from what has been agreed, each member of the blockchain will be aware of it.

A smart contract can trigger an action to fix the situation. Depending on the deviation size, this action may be either to simply adjust the storage or extend to changing “use-by” dates, declaring products unfit, or even applying penalties if needed.

Packaging sensitive products with tags, as well as putting smart thermometers in containers and at different key locations can help control temperature and ensure it hasn’t been violated along the process.

Let’s consider an example with fruits. After a fruit is picked, it makes many stops before getting to a store shelf. Farmers, packing-house employees, and other specialists can use the app to send details like delivery dates, locations and images of a fruit to the retailer’s Blockchain.

Comparing with the array of barcodes, scanners, paper forms and individual databases, with Blockchain the process is simpler and more secure. This speed and accuracy could save sales that otherwise would be lost as stores pull all fruits off shelves while waiting for trace-back results. It could also prevent illnesses.

The same thing with the beverages. Blockchain allows consumers to trace its beers’, for instance, ingredients from source via a QR code.The technology helps customers understand where their drink comes from and streamlines the restocking process.


3. Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals

Many opportunities of using Blockchain and IoT in supply chain management can be seen in healthcare industry too. For instance, the use of tags on packaging to track and secure medical supplies could help eliminate fraud for pharmaceutical drugs.

If the Internet of Things is combined with Blockchain for collecting data and verifying its authenticity, you can assure the viability of the supplies within the entire supply chain. Through them used together, you can ensure the absence of counterfeit medicines and bad equipment.

Blockchain supply chain solutions can allow businesses to have a clear view of how ingredients and finished goods are moved through each subcontractor and reduce profit losses from gray market trading, as well as increase confidence in end-market users by fighting against fraud and eliminating the number of counterfeit products.


4. Aviation

The airlines can use Blockchain to manage data about flights between countries and cities. Using one inconvertible and secure history source, airlines can reduce conflicting flight information coming from gate monitors, flight apps, or airline’s website.

The flight operations can be uploaded continuously to the Blockchain, giving all parties a view of the same information at the same time. As a result –  one pure, true instance of data. Blockchain can help airports manage growth, as the number of air travelers worldwide is expected to double within two decades.


5. Precious Stones

The use of Blockchain technology for eliminating fraud and tracking precious stones is one of the most promising directions.

Blockchain can provide companies with full supply chain transparency, thus enabling to avoid fraud for high-value goods, e.g., diamonds. Precious stones retailers can apply Blockchain solutions for monitoring diamonds each time they change location, starting from the moment they are mined.

With Blockchain solution integration, businesses can give their customers a guarantee that its diamonds are ethically mined, while also preventing any fraud and counterfeit.


6. Electric power systems

Another opportunity is to implement Ethereum smart contracts for redistributing excess power from solar panels. Blockchain-based applications can be used for monitoring and redistributing energy in the neighborhood microgrid. With the help of such systems, you can automate the buying and selling of green energy, thus saving costs and avoiding pollution.


7. Arts

The combination of IoT and Blockchain can also be used in the world of arts and luxury wares. Imagine these technologies to be integrated into new works of art (directly into the material) to guarantee its authenticity (for instance, by using DNA identification).

RFID tags can also be attached to luxury goods. Any attempt to replace them would destroy the seals or damage the good itself, making it unsellable.

Sensors can be used to capture identification and send it to Blockchain for authentication. The work of art can be scanned using the proper technology (DNA reader) and immediately be identified as authentic.


Hyperledger Sawtooth

Representing a set of communication protocols which allow administratively decentralized, replicated databases, distributed ledgers enable a secure infrastructure for both the issuance and exchange of digital assets. Also, they provide an immutable data record which is maintained without a central authority or a single administrator.

Hyperledger Sawtooth is a modular enterprise Blockchain platform for creating, deploying, and running distributed ledger applications and networks. Sawtooth facilitates Blockchain development and provides smart contract abstraction enabling programmers to write contract logic in a language they want.


How solutions, built with Hyperledger Sawtooth, work for supply chain industry


  • Improve traceability of goods to ensure their compliance with business standards
  • Give a greater access to raw material data
  • Eliminate losses from counterfeit and gray market trading
  • Provide an immutable and inconvertible record of such information as price, date, location, quality, certification, temperature
  • Reduce paperwork and administrative expenses with the use of smart contracts and Blockchain transactions
  • Provide consumers with a clear picture of all product steps along the supply chain journey, thus increasing public confidence and trust in joint data
  • Help a company to become a leader in the industry and strengthens its reputation through providing quality of materials used in products

Hope, the article has given you a lot of useful and interesting information.) If you have some questions or a project idea, apply to a reliable Blockchain development company and receive a consultation for free.

Having high expertise in delivering successful Blockchain-based solutions, we’re ready to provide you with high-quality services.

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Smartym Marketing Team