Blockchain-Based Transparent and Traceable Halal Food Supply Chain Management Systems

Blockchain-Based Transparent and Traceable Halal Food Supply Chain Management Systems

Aisha Zahid Junejo, Manzoor Ahmed Hashmani, Abdullah A. Alabdulatif
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-6477-6.ch023
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Halal food is gaining attention among Muslims and non-Muslims alike due to its nature of ensuring food is free from any impurities or contamination and hygienically prepared. The growing demand for Halal food has resulted in several food-producing companies to certify their products as Halal. However, with existing supply chains, there is no authenticity of these products being Halal. To ensure Halal food authenticity, the technology of blockchain is proposed as a viable solution. In this chapter, the applicability and usability of blockchain technology in food supply chain management systems is studied and highlighted. The study depicts that how trackability and traceability of the blockchain networks can effectively aid in maintaining the Halal integrity of food products by presenting various use cases. Technological shift for food supply chains over blockchains will result in more transparent, secure, and resilient supply chains. This will bring variety of health and economic benefits to food producing business and consumers.
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The innovative technology of the Blockchains has brought a huge disruption around the globe and is predicted to do the same in Asian region. Blockchains are decentralized and distributed ledgers that have eliminated the need of an intermediary third party for transaction verification and record keeping promoting trustless environment. This is done by providing the autonomy to all its participants to verify the authenticity of transaction. This verification is done through complex mathematics and computations. Since the technology is distributed, hence each node in the blockchain maintains its own copy of the ledger which ensures transparency of the data across the network. Although, the technology of blockchain was introduced with and for cryptocurrencies and banking sector, it eventually spread to other application domains such as education, healthcare, logistics, computer data analytics, etc., as well. The fundamental aim of this book chapter is to highlight the importance of blockchain applicability in logistics and supply chain management sector. In this book chapter, the authors have brought into attention on the benefits and usefulness of deploying blockchain in supply chain networks of the food industry. Food industry has recently experienced huge demand of Halal food by its consumers around the world, especially in Asia. Despite of the claims and Halal certification, there is no way to validate that the food item being sold and distributed by a company is Halal and Tayeb (hygienic). This chapter explores the versatility and usability of blockchain for supply chain management systems (SCMs) to ensure and authenticate the food being Halal. Moreover, this diffusion of blockchain into existing SCMs will assist food auditors to perform auditing easily and conveniently. Hence, this chapter also presents various benefits and challenges of using blockchains for SCMs. Further, various use cases of Halal food industries are considered and blockchain based supply chain frameworks are devised and presented for each one of these. The primary objectives of this chapter are:

  • 1.

    To investigate the need and demand of Halal food in food industry.

  • 2.

    To investigate the current state of issues in existing food supply chains

  • 3.

    To investigate the advantages of applicability of blockchain technology in food supply chains to maintain Halal integrity of the products.

  • 4.

    To devise and present blockchain based supply chain framework for Halal integrity of food.



For the past few years, the Asian Pacific region has been in the limelight for its fastest growing economy as compared to rest of the world. One of the top three industries contributing to the region’s economic boost is the food and beverage industry. A major driving force for this growth of food industry in this region, is the rich agricultural resources in ASEAN-5 countries. Although food industries, nowadays, are offering various new food products in compliance to consumer needs, however, it still faces some challenges that need to be overcome for better outcomes, further growth and sustenance of the industry. Some of these challenges include 1) rise of health consciousness among consumers; nowadays, people are more careful about the origin and preparation of the food items (Aday and Aday 2020) they consume as contamination in food has significantly increase. They just want to avoid any adverse effects on their health. 2) concerns about food product traceability (Lawo et al. 2021); not only are people keen on knowing the origin of the product, they also want to have liberty of tracing the food items as they move along various stages of the supply chain. This gives them more transparency of how the food is being handled and distributed, and 3) complications in inventory management systems; discrepancies and missing information may result in ineffective management of inventory items. All these issues are further elaborated and discussed in later sections of the chapter.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Halal: According to Islamic Shariah Laws, the food that is free of any contamination and impurities and is produced through hygienic processes is said to be Halal. This food is the kind of food that is acceptable to be consumed by Muslims.

Food Fraud: When a company sells the food items with ingredients that are not acceptable by the masses and are against what has been advertised, then the company is said to be indulging in a food fraud.

Asia Pacific: The region of the world that includes East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and Oceania.

Food Recalls: A time to time check of food products by the producing company or distributors, that ensure faulty food products are discarded before reaching the customer and causing health issues.

Blockchain Technology: Blockchain is a database that is stored on multiple computers at the same time. This technology has been invented to eliminate the need of intermediary third party for transaction verification and record keeping. This ensures trustless environment with greater transparency and user autonomy.

ASEAN-5: This refers to five Asian countries including Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, and Singapore.

Tayeb: Hygienic.

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