Product labelling that uses blockchain technology to demonstrate the traceability of Australian beef will be on show at Beef Australia 2021.

The project, called KPMG Origins – Trusted Beef Traceability, aims to deliver $115 million in additional sales by 2025, and is the result of a collaboration between Argyle Foods Group, Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA), and KPMG, and targets significant export markets across South East Asia, with a focus on China.

“This has been a three year journey of understanding the various Asian markets and consumers,” explains Lachlan Graham, co-CEO of Argyle Foods Group.

“Addressing one of our key market access challenges, we’ve worked closely with our retailers and MLA to develop a unique ‘snap frozen’ product and supply chain that has reduced our costs by 80 per cent. 

“This has provided Argyle increased available working capital to significantly expand our exports.”

KPMG Origins is a blockchain-based traceability platform, including information from across the beef supply chain, which has enabled Argyle Foods Group to have the ability to provide international beef retailers’ comprehensive information on the paddock-to-plate story of individual packs of beef. 

The information can be used to validate product claims and underpin the premium quality status for beef from Australia, and can be easily accessed by scanning a code on the product’s label. 

It includes details such as information about the breeding property, the conditions under which the cattle were raised, the processing practices, certifications, Internet of Things (IoT) temperature tracking, and full-life traceability journey of the beef products.

“Our mission with KPMG Origins is to provide an intuitive data trust platform that will reshape industries with exceptional visibility and control of supply chains,” says Laszlo Peter, head of blockchain services APAC, KPMG Australia.

“We achieve this by utilising and integrating with existing cattle and beef data solutions such as the ISC National Livestock Identification System (NLIS), livestock management, processor, logistics and IoT data trackers. 

“This data is then permissioned by the product owner as to who in their value chain should have visibility of this data relating to their products. 

“The standardised nature of the KPMG Origins platform enables all supply chain participants the ability to communicate in a common data language throughout the value chain.”

KPMG Origins says the technology delivers the additional information further validating the claims being made about a product in an automated and seamless manner, ensuring the provision of the additional information does not become an administrative burden.

“We are seeing an increasing global demand for high quality protein and a growing middle-class affluence in key export regions in Asia,” says Michael Crowley, general manager, R&D and Adoption, MLA.

“With this comes a heightened interest in food provenance and it’s therefore more important than ever that Australia on the front-foot to allow our beef industry to share its story and utilise new and emerging technologies to do so.

“This technology also allows us to address some of the obstacles that will support sustainable access into key international markets like China, dealing with issues such as clearance documentation or shelf-life requirements.

“MLA is able to share its significant market data and insights with supply chain partners such as Argyle Foods Group to support prototyping of new and exciting products in key markets, and help build a greater understanding of customers and deliver against their expectations.”

KPMG Orgins is available now for Australian beef companies to subscribe to the service, and is currently working with a number of beef customers and MLA to further enhance the value of the solution for the Australian red meat industry.

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