Logistics is the process of planning, implementing and controlling the efficient and cost-effective flow and storage of goods, services consumption and related information from the place of origin to the place of consumption in order to meet the needs of customers. It includes the management of the flow of goods, information and resources from the source of production to the end of consumption. As part of the supply chain, logistics ensures that the right goods are in the right place at the right time at the lowest possible cost.
Logistics consists of transportation, service, distribution, warehousing, packaging, handling, distribution and processing of goods, and related logistics information, etc. In these links, both the transmission of physical goods and the corresponding data information are included, but if there is an error in one of these links or if someone makes a malicious modification, the accuracy and safety of the logistics process can be guaranteed.
Combining blockchain technology into logistics can truly and reliably record and transmit capital flow, logistics and information flow. The blockchain network acts as a decentralized shared digital ledger that can be accessed by all participants in the supply chain. This will facilitate the tracking of shipments in real time and without much manual intervention, and logistics will be accelerated.
Blockchain's record of goods from dispatch to receipt also ensures traceability of information, thus avoiding lost packages, false claims, impersonation claims, etc. When signing for the goods, it is only necessary to check the blockchain records and claim them through the customer's special signature, which will eliminate many problems such as forged signatures to claim the packages fraudulently.
In reality, there are already a number of logistics and retail companies that have adopted blockchain technology. VeChain, for example, is a blockchain project developed specifically for supply chain management and logistics. They create a tamper-proof digital version of physical goods by embedding a specific chip, which makes it easy for users to check the information of goods and track various details during the transportation process. At the same time, the entire transmission process of the goods is recorded on the VeChain blockchain, which is open and transparent. Currently, companies in the luxury goods, food and beverage industries, including Walmart, are already using the services provided by VeChain to track product details: consumers can scan the desired product to obtain detailed information, including but not limited to the origin, the product's logistics process, product inspection reports, and other data.
Supply Chain Management
Supply Chain Management (SCM) is the management of the flow of goods, data, and money associated with a product or service from the procurement of raw materials to the delivery of the product to its final destination. Supply chain activities cover procurement, product lifecycle management, supply chain planning (including inventory planning and maintenance of corporate assets and production lines), logistics (including transportation and fleet management), and order management. In order to manage the information generated in such a large number of segments, supply chain management companies need to ensure that each segment operates efficiently and needs to work to reduce operational costs, as well as respond to the growing demand for transparency from customers and partner companies.
According to a report by Deloitte, the current supply chain faces five challenges in digital upgrading: high cost of information interaction, weak chain-wide traceability, difficulty in ensuring compliance, poor dynamic adaptability, and low business efficiency. The innovative features of blockchain technology will help optimize supply chain management in these areas. For example, through blockchain technology and electronic signature technology, the digitization of logistics documents can be realized, which can also ensure the unification of document flow and information flow, promote information sharing among logistics subjects, or rely on smart contracts to further optimize the transaction process and improve overall efficiency.
Meanwhile, to achieve full product traceability, data needs to be stored in a transparent, secure and immutable unified database. Creating a shared distributed ledger through blockchain technology reduces the risk of fraud and errors by recording transactions and assets in a tamper-proof and decentralized manner. Blockchain can track the origin of raw materials, the movement of products throughout the supply chain, and delivery to the end consumer, and people can have a complete and transparent understanding of the entire supply chain process.
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