Fair Label versus Blockchain Technology from the Consumer Perspective: Towards a Comprehensive Research Agenda
No 2/2022, June
Sodamin, D., Vaněk, J., Ulman, M. and Šimek, P. (2022) "Fair Label versus Blockchain Technology from the Consumer Perspective: Towards a Comprehensive Research Agenda", AGRIS on-line Papers in Economics and Informatics, Vol. 14, No. 2, pp. 111-119. ISSN 1804-1930. DOI 10.7160/aol.2022.140209.
Many small farmers and workers on plantations in poorer countries constantly live on the poverty threshold. Those people suffer from rising commodity prices and trade structures that pass price pressure to the weakest link. Farmers are at the mercy of these structures and must comply as they have no other choice. On the consumers' side of the supply chain, it is often hard to recognize agricultural products' fairness and originality, especially in processed food. Many organizations – through food labelling - partially inform consumers about products' provenance and fairness. Whereas several studies confirm that food labels positively influence the consumers' intention to buy food, the vast number of organizations and labels are hard to evaluate and distinguish. A technology that could be a gamechanger in sustainable and fair global agriculture could be Blockchain Technology (BCT). With the help of BCT, the need for a central authority like a "fair label" agency may become obsolete, with the same or even better results. This conceptual article surveys subject matter literature and concludes that there is a noticeable research gap in the possibility of BCT replacing or enhancing fair food labels. Thus, the paper shows the potential of BCT to improve fairer agricultural supply chains and make them transparent for customers. By doing so, some research areas and research questions will be derived. Furthermore, specific directions for future research will be shown.
Fair agriculture, blockchain, supply chain management, fairtrade, food labelling
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