Amazon and Infosys have responded to an expression of interest (EoI) announced by the Tea Board of India to use blockchain and allied technologies for tea traceability. A report by the Economic Times said regional bank Yes Bank and 25 other firms have also expressed their interest in the Tea Board’s call.
In October, the Tea Board floated the EoI to build an end-to-end traceability solution for the tea industry, and may soon award a contract for the project.
India is the world’s second-largest tea producer and fourth-largest exporter. Tea Board deputy chairman Arun Kumar Ray cited long-term sustainability issues faced by the industry as costs are rising, but tea prices have been mostly stagnant for a few years.
The Tea Board will initially focus on the traceability of orthodox tea blends or loose leaf traditional teas, which should help growers to realize higher profits. “If this (stagnating price) situation continues, the labourers will go away and fine plucking, for which India is famous, will not exist,” Ray told the Economic Times.
India has been bullish on blockchain, and last week the ministry of electronics and information technology (MeitY) announced it would launch a national level blockchain framework for various sectors in the country.
The Coffee Board of India has already launched its blockchain coffee marketplace, which has about 30,000 registered farmers. The solution aims to enhance the coffee supply chain by usingblockchain.
Meanwhile, China, which is the largest producer of tea in the world, recently launched the Yunnan Pu’er Tea Traceability Platform, in collaboration with VeChain and a few local partners.