Applications and Use Cases

Unilever to Use Blockchain to Create a Deforestation-Free Supply Chain


June 19, 2020

In a massive win for the environment, consumer goods company Unilever announced it will use blockchain and other technologies to reduce its carbon footprint and maintain a deforestation-free supply chain by 2023. The company, which owns popular brands Ben & Jerry's, Knorr and Vaseline, is aiming to achieve net-zero emissions by 2039 through a variety of sustainable business practices.

Unilever plans to use traceability solutions to create its deforestation-free supply chain. The offerings will combine blockchain with geolocation tracking and satellite monitoring. The company sells products through its numerous brands in 190 countries and maintains a massive supply chain.

Many of Unilever's brands have a history of sustainability, and the company will also invest more than $1 billion in a dedicated Climate & Nature Fund over the next 10 years. Ben & Jerry's piloted a blockchain-based retail platform in 2018 to offset the carbon footprint of every cone of ice cream sold. The platform let consumers contribute to carbon credits used for a forest conservation project in Peru.

Ben & Jerry's also partnered with Poseidon Foundation to develop an app enabling consumers to track carbon offsets purchased from Ben & Jerry's and other retailers.

“In most parts of the world, the economic and social inclusion of farmers and smallholders in sustainable agricultural production is the single most important driver of change for halting deforestation, restoring forests and helping regenerate nature,” said Marc Engel, chief supply chain officer at Unilever.

The use of blockchain will enable traceability and transparency throughout the company's supply chain, in an effort to combat deforestation. Unilever is also introducing a new regenerative agriculture code for suppliers and will also implement water stewardship programs for local communities.




Edited by Maurice Nagle

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