Unilever to Use Blockchain for Carbon Neutral Supply Chain

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  • Unilever plans to use blockchain technology to help it go carbon-neutral
  • The consumer goods giant aims to be emission free by 2039
  • Blockchain technology will help the company’s supply chain be deforestation-free by 2023

Unilever has announced a plan to use blockchain technology as part of its efforts to implement a climate-friendly supply chain. The consumer goods giant, worth some $144 billion, yesterday set out a new range of measures it is taking in order for its supply chain to be carbon neutral by 2039, with blockchain playing a part alongside other technologies.

Unilever to Obtain $1 Billion in Funding

Unilever said in a statement yesterday that the brands under its umbrella will invest a total of $1 billion to help fund various measures aimed at reducing and then eventually eliminating carbon emissions from its operations, including goals along the way:

We will achieve a deforestation-free supply chain by 2023. To do this, we will increase traceability and transparency by using emerging digital technologies – such as satellite monitoring, geolocation tracking and blockchain – accelerating smallholder inclusion and changing our approach to derivates sourcing.

Unilever does not state exactly how technologies such as blockchain will be used to ensure that their supply chain is deforestation-free, but we know that supply chain is one of the areas where blockchain technology really can thrive. It is particularly useful where authenticity is required, such as confirming that elements of the supply chain have come from organic or carbon-free entities.

Amazon to Eliminate Deforestation?

There is also no word yet whether Unilever will be relying on an in-house system over a third party to provide their blockchain solution, but if past examples are anything to go by then there is more likelihood of the firm customizing an off the shelf offering rather than using an existing one. This could be Quorum, the private, enterprise-focused version of Ethereum already used by JPMorgan and other companies, or perhaps even using technology from Amazon’s newly patented supply chain blockchain.