This page acts as the project overview for the SheepChain Demo, a collaborative project between American Certified Brands (BeefChain), the Canadian Sheep Federation, Brookwater Farms and NorthumberLamb Co-op.
This project sought to prove out the integration of provenance tracing blockchain-based technology and its integration into the sheep supply chain.
Its hard to track sheep without a great source of quality animals. Harry Elsinga’s Brookwater Farms, a family owned and operated venture located on Prince Edward Island, provided the sheep for the demo. Elsinga’s sheep proved to be an excellent choice, as his operation already tags the animals with RFID tags when they are born, providing provenance of the sheep’s life from birth. They track their progress into full-grown sheep using these tags and additional software. Additionally, their sheep program is focused and committed to raising their animals in the most comfortable way possible.
The next step was finding the perfect processor. They needed to have great process flow and an eagerness to introduce the future of tracking and monitoring to their facility. That was found in NorthumberLamb. NorthumberLamb is a sheep co-op based in Truro, Nova Scotia. They focus on providing high quality meat products, and for their efforts, their meat is in high demand and held in high esteem.
Software and tech were provided by American Certified Brands, aka BeefChain. We used the knowledge we gained from our track and trace operations in the cattle industry to come up with a technological solution for tracking the sheep involved in this demo.
None of this would have been possible without the assistance and resources of the Canadian Sheep Federation. The federation created and facilitated this operation with the goal of adding more value and actionable data to their members’ animals. Outside of this demo, the CSF works to represent the interests of sheep farmers at the federal level and explores how new technology can help make their industry more valuable, efficient and safe.
The sheep had already been tagged at Brookwater Farms, and were scanned when they were loaded onto the trailer for transport and scannedupon arrival at NorthumberLamb. At Northumberlamb, once processing had begun, the RFID tags were scanned once more. At this point, the animals were no longer traced individually, and instead the products became one batch. Times were recorded for when the last carcass went to hang in cold storage, when processing and breaking down the carcass into primals and sub-primals began, and finally when packaging finished. This information was recorded using American Certified Brands API, and a data portal was created to view the information.
Projects like this one represent the future of food, and the success of this project demonstrates that new technology can be easily adapted to existing process flows and procedures. At American Certified Brands, we look forward to exciting projects such as this one, which allow us to test our software and learn more about animal tracking processes that are different from our primary cattle focus.
Want to learn more about this project? Click here.
Want to see the data portal created for this project? Click here.