Application of blockchain technology for sustainability development in agricultural supply chain: justification framework

Abstract

Blockchain technology, is conceptualised as a type of disruptive technology and is regarded as one of the prime tools of Industry 4.0 today. The varied features of Blockchain like smart contract, decentralisation, transparency, traceability, data immutability and data privacy along with a consensus mechanism make it suitable to be utilized in the complex and multi—echelon supply chains of today. These factors improve the production processes and make the existing supply chains agile, resilient and responsive in the long term. Blockchain also add an aspect of sustainability which correlates with the phenomenon of circular economy in today’s world. Hence firms should compare and evaluate the significance of the traditional supply chain and blockchain-enabled supply chain in bringing the concept of sustainability in the supply chain today. This paper aims to highlight the benefits of blockchain in supply chain management with the help of a literature review along with opinions of experts from the agricultural sector. The key benefits identified are data privacy, decentralisation, immutability of data, smart contract, improved sustainability, building of resilient supply chains, transparency and shared database. These potential benefits of blockchain are assessed using the analytical hierarchical process technique. Global desirability index for traditional supply chain and blockchain—enabled supply chain is calculated. The high value of global desirability index of the blockchain-enabled supply chain over the traditional supply chain suggests that the application of blockchain technology in the supply chain is justified for bringing sustainability in the supply chain. This study aims to offer meaningful implications for practitioners so that they can take suitable measures for adoption of this technology.

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Mukherjee, A., Singh, R.K., Mishra, R. et al. Application of blockchain technology for sustainability development in agricultural supply chain: justification framework. Oper Manag Res (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12063-021-00180-5

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Keywords

  • Blockchain-enabled supply chain
  • Traditional supply chain
  • Analytical hierarchical process
  • Supply chain management