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Carrefour SA, one of the largest hypermarket chains in the world, has said that its adoption of blockchain technology is boosting sales.
The retail giant, with €77B in annual revenue, has been using the budding technology to track produce, meat, and milk directly from farms to its stores.
Carrefour SA’s top executive said on Monday that its adoption of blockchain technology has led to a significant increase in sales. The company has been utilizing a distributed ledger system to allow customers to see exactly when its products were harvested or packed. The system also provides information on whether products came from GMOs or were produced with antibiotics or pesticides.
The company claims that the system allowed customers to make smarter decisions and, as a result, boosted sales. Currently, the multinational retail chain has information for more than 20 items stored on its blockchain-based system including eggs, raw milk, pork, cheeses. The retailer plans to expand its system to include 100 more products by the year’s end.
Carrefour’s blockchain product manager told Reuters that it is trying to create a ‘halo effect’ for consumers. The goal is to use blockchain to get more customers to trust the retail chain. By being transparent on where their food is coming from, it has demonstrated that consumers are more willing to buy Carrefour’s products overall.
Carrefour currently operates in more than 30 countries in Europe with over 12,300 self-service shops, one of the largest hypermarket chains in the world.
Carrefour is just one of many retail giants trying to leverage blockchain to cut costs and improve sales. However, it is among the first to speak of outright success in piloting the technology. Consumers who actively seek organic and ethical products are becoming more trusting towards Carrefour as a result.
The process is easy. Consumers can scan a QR barcode for an item and access the information stored on Carrefour’s distributed ledger system. The information available includes the date of harvest, where it was harvested, and when it was packed. Tips on how to prepare the purchased food is also stored on the blockchain-based system.
Of course, Carrefour says that there is still ample room for expansion. Some farmers are still unwilling to share too much information, but overall the pilot has been a massive success.
Carrefour says that it plans to expand its blockchain-based system to include non-food items as well. Clothing, for example, will soon be added. The multinational chain has also said that it is still experimenting with how to provide product information without the use of a QR code.
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