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Since last year, " blockchain " has become the hottest term. Some people think that this is a big flicker, and some people think that this is a big change. Xu Xiaoping called it a "shun of the prosperous and the inverse of the perishing. Great technological revolution. " By 2018, the vigorous blockchain has caught off guard in agriculture . What exactly is a blockchain? What will blockchain bring to agriculture?
What is a blockchain?
In simple terms, blockchain technology refers to a way for people to participate in bookkeeping. There is a database behind all the systems, you can think of the database as a large ledger. Then it becomes important who keeps this ledger.
Whose system is currently used to keep accounts, the account of WeChat is Tencent, and the account of Taobao is Ali. But now in the blockchain system, everyone in the system can have the opportunity to participate in bookkeeping. If there is any data change in a certain period of time, everyone in the system can come to bookkeeping. The system will judge the person who records quickly and well in this period of time, write the content of his records to the ledger, and write this Within a period of time, the contents of the ledger are sent to all others in the system for backup. In this way everyone in the system has a complete ledger. In this way, we call it blockchain technology.
The most significant advantages of the blockchain industry application are optimizing business processes, reducing operating costs, and improving synergy efficiency. This advantage has gradually been reflected in social areas such as financial services, the Internet of Things , public services, social welfare, and supply chain management.
Does the blockchain have anything to do with agriculture?
The current problem of agricultural development stems from the imbalance between supply and demand of agricultural products. The main reason for the imbalance between supply and demand is that in the three major links of agricultural production , distribution and consumption, producers and consumers are too scattered and weak, and the two parties cannot achieve information symmetry, cannot directly connect, and cannot determine prices.
Both sides can only make rational but helpless choices: producers use all methods to reduce costs; consumers can only choose products with lower prices; distributors can only fight price wars, creating a vicious circle.
People in the industry believe that blockchain can just solve this pain point. "From the perspective of consumers, blockchain technology can satisfy the right to know and choose agricultural products that they trust. From the perspective of buyers, they are worried about the quality of agricultural products purchased in bulk. Well, you can choose trusted farmers by analyzing the planting process and big data . "
The fastest-moving is Zhongnan Construction, a "good taste" of the blockchain agricultural company that the company cooperated with Beidahuang Company. The first batch of blockchain-certified rice products has now been launched to the market.
Take potato production as an example to explain, all the data of the entire potato production process will be uploaded to the distributed ledger storage, forming the content of the non-tamperable ledger, which is provided to consumers and buyers for inspection.
For example, the procurement process of fertilizers and pesticides is recorded in the book to avoid the problems of excessive heavy metal standards and excessive pesticide residues from the root cause; through the analysis of big data, the credit rating reference for growers and buyers is established; and smart contracts are used for growers and buyers Fair trade between guarantees. The sales process also stores information such as sorting and processing in a distributed ledger to ensure complete and transparent information to stakeholders.
So, in this process, how does the biggest advantage of the blockchain, that is, the advantages of distributed account books? In this regard, in the past, buyers would send someone a high price for potato growers before purchasing. However, when a farmer digs up potatoes from the field, the farmer often cannot reach this person. At this time, the buyer sends another person to take advantage of the fact that potatoes are not easy to store on the ground, which greatly reduces the price of potatoes. With the adoption of blockchain technology, every transaction is open to everyone, and this problem can be solved.
Use blockchain technology to achieve full distribution, so that consumers, growers, buyers, wholesalers, etc. all keep synchronized accounting to prevent tampering. You can use the mutual incompatible mechanism to check and ensure the authenticity of the data and avoid benefits. Risk of concerted action under convergence.
The traditional traceability system is the individual behavior of a single company, and it is both an athlete and a referee, and its credibility is weak. After the adoption of blockchain technology, the distributed ledger will organize farmers, cooperatives, dealers, and consumers to record planting information together, and use the non-tamperable feature to play a role of information transparency.
Third, what are the areas in which blockchain may change agriculture?
The blockchain market has begun to conceive. It does not yet have large-scale landing conditions in the short term. Pay attention to the landing of upstream and downstream industrial chains and future business scenarios.
Dr. Kang Chunpeng, Information Center of the Ministry of Agriculture, believes that blockchain will be used in 6 major fields, such as IoT agriculture , traceability of agricultural products , and rural finance, and promote industrial development.
At present, the main factors restricting the large-scale promotion of the agricultural Internet of Things are high application and maintenance costs and poor performance. Moreover, the Internet of Things is centralized management. With the explosion of Internet of Things equipment, the infrastructure investment and maintenance costs of data centers are difficult to estimate.
The combination of the Internet of Things and the blockchain will enable these devices to achieve self-management and maintenance, which eliminates the high maintenance costs centered on cloud control, reduces the subsequent maintenance costs of Internet devices, and helps improve the agricultural Internet of Things. Intelligence and scale .
The three major achievements of traditional databases, relational models, transaction processing, query optimization, and database technology are constantly developing. With the establishment of agricultural big data collection system in the future, how to solve the authenticity and validity of data in a large-scale manner will be a difficult problem facing the whole society.
The technology represented by the blockchain is a new starting point for the requirements that the data is authentic, valid, unforgeable and cannot be tampered with.
3. Traceability of agricultural product quality and safety :
In the process of agricultural industrialization, there is a long distance between the place of production and the place of consumption. Consumers have no way of knowing the information such as pesticides, fertilizers and additives used in transportation and processing by the producers, and consumers' trust in production has decreased.
The agricultural product traceability system based on blockchain technology, once all the data is recorded on the blockchain ledger, it cannot be changed. Advanced technology relying on asymmetric encryption and mathematical algorithms fundamentally eliminates human factors and makes information more transparent.
4. Rural finance:
Farmers' loans are generally difficult. The main reason is the lack of effective collateral, which in the final analysis is the lack of a credit mortgage mechanism. The open and immutable nature of blockchain technology provides the possibility for a decentralized trust mechanism.
When a new agricultural business entity applies for a loan, it needs to provide corresponding credit information, which depends on the corresponding information data recorded by the bank, insurance, or credit reporting agency. However, there are problems such as incomplete information, inaccurate data, and high use costs. The usefulness of the blockchain is to rely on program algorithms to automatically record massive amounts of information and store them on each computer of the blockchain network. The information is transparent, the tampering is difficult, and the use cost is low. Therefore, when applying for a loan, it is no longer necessary to rely on intermediary institutions such as banks and credit reporting companies to provide credit certificates, and the loan institution can obtain the corresponding information and data of the blockchain.
5. Agricultural insurance:
Agricultural insurance has a small variety and low coverage, and insurance fraud often occurs. After combining blockchain with agricultural insurance, agricultural insurance will have a lot of room for improvement in agricultural intellectual property protection and agricultural property rights transactions, and it will greatly simplify the agricultural insurance process.
In addition, because smart contracts are an important concept of the blockchain, applying the concept of smart contracts to the field of agricultural insurance will make agricultural insurance payments more intelligent. In the past, if a large agricultural natural disaster occurred, the corresponding claim period would be relatively long. After the smart contract is applied to the blockchain, once an agricultural disaster is detected, the compensation process will be automatically started, so that the compensation efficiency is higher.
6. Agricultural industry supply chain:
Blockchain technology helps improve the efficiency of supply chain management. Because the data is open and transparent between the parties to the transaction, a complete and smooth information flow is formed throughout the supply chain, which can ensure that the participating parties can timely find problems in the operation of the supply chain system and find out targeted Problem-solving methods to improve the overall efficiency of supply chain management.
Blockchain technology can avoid supply chain disputes. The characteristics of immutable data and proof of the existence of time stamps can be well applied to resolve disputes between participants in the supply chain system, and achieve easy proof and accountability. Blockchain technology can be used for product anti-counterfeiting. The combination of data tamperability and transaction traceability can eliminate the problem of counterfeiting and shoddy products in the supply chain.
March 12, 2018
Chengdu Xinxin Electronic Technology Co., Ltd. Editorial Department
Editor: Little Devil in Gourd