IBM Pork Traceability Project. Disrupting Business as Usual in Shandong

Thursday, August 30, 2012 5:42
Posted in category China Logistics, Invest in China
Comments Off on IBM Pork Traceability Project. Disrupting Business as Usual in Shandong

Last year, Jack Ma said in an interview with Charlie Rose that the biggest business opportunities (in China) would be those that fix China’s problems, and if you have been following IBM in china they are clearly showing an interest.

A statement I completely agree with, and as an example of where I feel foreign firms in China have a (real chance) to participate in this “restorative economy” I’d like to highlight IBM’s pork traceability project. Which was launched last December in partnership with the Shandong Commercial Group Co

According to Bloomberg’s coverage IBM to Build Food-Safety System for Pork in China’s Shandong:

IBM said its project is part of a 195 million yuan cold- supply chain that Shandong province is building in line with China’s efforts to improve food safety. The contract forms a “very small portion” of the project, which will have full monitoring and tracing capabilities, from farms to warehouses and retailers

[..] Shandong Commercial has already tested IBM’s food- monitoring system at 6 slaughter houses, 6 warehouses and about 100 hypermarkets or supermarkets across the province

It is a a program that comes at a time that is absolutely critical to China, as my recent posts on food safety in China highlight, and what I like about it (and believe ultimately Beijing will like about it) is that the technology that the program is built on will remove the ability of local actors from manipulating or influencing the data itself. It is a product that, if built out across geography and product/ industry, could create the disruption to China’s vested interests.  Problems could be identified earlier, inspections could be ordered quicker, and failed products could be removed from shelves faster.

Which has some powerful implications for China’s food industry and consumers alike..


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