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Cargill Program Allows Consumers to Identify Farm That Raised Their Turkey

It was a comic skit on Portlandia: two hipsters asking about the provenance of the locally raised chicken being served in a restaurant. But farce has become fact this holiday season under a pilot program by Cargill that allows consumers to identify the farm that raised their turkey, “view the family farm story, see photos from the farm, and read a message from the farmer.”

Cargill, one of the world’s largest food companies, said its surveys repeatedly showed that shoppers value transparency in business operations and that “consumers feel good about buying turkey raised by family farmers. These insights led to the development and pilot of the first-to-market blockchain-based solution for turkey.” In selected markets, shoppers can text or enter a code from the package to learn the life story of their fresh whole turkey sold under the Honeysuckle White brand name.

Cargill said it will use the pilot “as an opportunity to learn more about the value of traceability in its turkey supply chain.” The blockchain system requires all participants in the supply chain to agree before a new detail is added to the record, boosting its accuracy.

Buzzfeed described the pilot as “clearly an entertaining novelty for consumers.” The blockchain turkeys are sold “in select supermarkets — primarily Albertsons, Kroger, and Walmart — in 18 states, mainly in the South and Midwest.”

FERN’s Ag Insider. Produced by FERN
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