Successful businesses rely on good data. Now that we have more data sources than ever before, manufacturers and suppliers cannot properly function without distribution software. With a greater emphasis on tracking materials through every phase of the supply chain, manufacturers who lack good distribution ERP software could find themselves in trouble in the very near future.
Tracking Changes in Supply Chain
Supply chain tracking has moved from phone calls and paper records to the world of IoT, RFID tags, and remote tracking. That’s great for shipments of steel and plastic, but what about when it comes to perishable goods? What about pharmaceuticals, food manufacturing ingredients, and other crucial perishable elements?
Supply Chains on Blockchain
We’ve recently been introduced to blockchain, an immutable public record that can be used by manufacturers to track items along the supply chain route. Made famous by Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, blockchain is more than magic money. Transactions made on the blockchain form a permanent and public record that provides a time, date, and location stamp for each transaction.
Blockchain-based tracking offers easy methods of recording business transactions; no third party is needed to record the exchange because the blockchain records it all. Industries including real estate, travel, tourism, communications, and entertainment are racing to be the first to develop blockchain-based solutions to their transactions.
Distribution ERP Software Meets Blockchain
For food manufacturers, especially, blockchain couldn’t come a moment too soon. Last spring, contaminated Romaine lettuce sickened 205 people from an E.coli outbreak; 5 of those people died. The CDC warned consumers not to eat lettuce grown in the Yuma, Arizona region since the outbreak originated on farms in that part of the country.
Consumers, however, may not always be able to determine where their lettuce was grown. Like much of the current food supply, lettuce and other vegetables may travel great distances from farm to table with stops in warehouses, packaging facilities, trucks, storerooms, and finally, supermarket shelves. Along the way, they can pick up some bad bugs, including E.coli.
Wal-Mart decided it needed that information, and it has the power and clout to find out. Growers including Driscoll’s berries and Dole Food Company piloted a program utilizing blockchain tracking for the food supply chain. Blockchain let them anonymously track fruit and vegetable purchases without growers needing to reveal the farms in their networks to their competitors.
The impact of Wal-Mart’s groundbreaking move is yet to be seen, but food manufacturers and pharmaceutical manufacturers could learn a lot from this. Today’s businesses demand accountability. In the case of the E.coli outbreak, such accountability saved lives.
Why Do I Need Blockchain?
If you’ve already got ERP distribution software, you may be wondering why you should add something like blockchain. Here’s why: Distribution ERP software can help you track such shipments into your distribution centers and manage the data to the endpoint. Blockchain can track supply chain inputs like fresh lettuce or chemicals to manufacture life-saving antibiotics. The resulting data not only help in the event of an emergency, but also give people peace of mind that their food and medicine is safe and helpful.
Distribution Software from PositiveVision
Ready to learn more about ERP distribution software and how blockchain can work with these programs? PositiveVision offers several world-class ERP software solutions designed to help your distribution run smoothly and safely. We’ll deliver the best distribution software solution for your needs and leverage our expertise to ensure you reap the most benefits from your new software. Contact us now to get the facts.