SAP and Unilever Test Blockchain Technology for Deforestation-Free Palm Oil

SAP and Unilever have announced a pilot of the GreenToken by SAP solution to further increase traceability and transparency in Unilever’s global palm oil supply chain.

A handful of palm fruits

Raw materials such as palm oil are often mixed with physically identical raw materials from controlled sustainable and uncontrolled sources after the “first mile” of the supply chain, leaving information about its origin either hidden or lost.

In a successful proof of concept in Indonesia, Unilever applied GreenToken to purchase more than 188,000 tons of oil palms. The solution enabled Golden Agri-Resources and other suppliers from which Unilever sources palm oil to create tokens that reflect the palm oil’s material flow throughout the supply chain and capture the unique characteristics associated with the oil’s origin.

“With GreenToken, we want to bring the same traceability and supply chain transparency to bulk commodities that you get from scanning a barcode or QR code on any consumer product,” said Nitin Jain, co-founder and general manager of the GreenToken by SAP solution, JUICE. “Our solution enables companies to tell what percentage of palm oil products they have sourced from sustainable sources and trace this back to the final consumer product.”

“Technology has been instrumental in our efforts to improve visibility and transparency in our own palm oil supply chains,” said Anita Neville, chief sustainability and communications officer, Golden Agri-Resources. “Our participation in the pilot of the GreenToken by SAP solution with SAP and Unilever has provided useful insights into how we can successfully transfer information between different actors in the supply chain.”

The GreenToken solution helped Unilever track, verify and report in near real time the origin and journey of palm oil through its long and complex supply chain.

“Unilever is committed to achieving a deforestation-free supply chain by 2023, and blockchain technology has the potential to help companies, like ours, monitor their supply chains to ensure the raw materials we purchase respect people and the planet.” said Dave Ingram, chief procurement officer, Unilever. “We are encouraged by the promising results of our pilot with GreenToken by SAP, the latest building block in our tech-enabled approach to ensure a more traceable and transparent supply chain.”

The partnership with GreenToken reinforces Unilever’s ongoing and industry-leading efforts to gain full visibility into its supply chain.

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