The Consumer Goods Forum’s End-to-End Value Chain Pillar organised its second SpringBoard workshop of the year in Cambridge, MA (US) on 19 September 2018.  Hosted by IBM, the workshop focused on ‘Blockchain Interoperability’ and was attended by representatives from retailers Metro, Migros, SPAR International; manufacturers Kao, P&G, SC Johnson, supplier Symrise and other organisations including GMA and GS1 US. IBM specialists and Blockchain developers also participated in the event.

Discussions took place around blockchain, the shared, distributed ledger that facilitates the process of recording transactions and tracking assets in a business network. A series of best practices were presented and the workshop concluded that:

  • APIs play a key role, covering aspects of ID/Descriptor, Data Availability and Access Control;
  • A set of voluntary Business Rules is necessary to establish a supportive EcoSystem for immutable databases with permission-based transaction logging;
  • A clear value proposition needs to be defined in the interoperability discussion, including:
  1. Why is it unique?
  2. How does it enable faster, easier and more efficient transaction control and storing?
  3. What are the aspects on Risk mitigation?
  4. “Business Process 4.0” – this technology enables new processes and not necessarily drives value when adopted to existing processes

The outcomes of the workshop will be shared in an upcoming Learning Series paper on ‘Blockchain Interoperability’, co-published with IBM and expected to be finalised by January 2019. The paper will include a set of concrete action items for companies to apply within their operations.

For more information, please contact the End-to-End Value Chain Team.