Coca Cola and the US State Department, along with a few other organizations, are launching a project that uses blockchain technology to fight forced labor issues. The use of blockchain to fight against forced labor creates a security registry of workers around the world. The aim is to help protect the rights of the 25 million people who work under forced labor. According to reports, around 47 percent of those working under forced labor live in the Asia-Pacific.
Beverage companies in the past have been asked by regulators to overcome this issue of forced labor in different countries. The focus of regulators is particularly on those countries where beverage companies get their sugarcane.
KnowTheChain Report on Forced Labor
In order to stop forced labor, a comprehensive KnowTheChain “awareness report” has been published. KnowTheChain aims to help investors and businesses understand and address the forced labor problems within their supply chain. The KnowTheChain report of 2016 takes into account the activities of 60 different companies in what are considered “risky sectors”.
This report covers how organizations can overcome problems within their supply chain, particularly those related to human trafficking and forced labor. The three main sectors that the report touches include information & communications technology, food & beverage, and apparel & footwear.
Food & Beverages lists some of the world’s most famous brands including Unilever, Coca Cola, Nestle, PepsiCo, and Wilmar among others. The three top ranked food & beverage companies that KnowTheChian identifies as forerunners in tackling forced labor problems include Unilever, Coca Cola, and Nestle.
Coca Cola and US State Department to Use Blockchain to Fight Forced Labor
The new project will use blockchain technology’s validation & digital notary capabilities. Here is what the Coca Cola’s HR Head, Brent Wilton had to say about this initiative.
“We are partnering with the pilot of this project to further increase transparency and efficiency of the verification process related to labor policies within our supply chain.”
The US State Department’s Deputy Assistant Secretary also expressed hope about the upcoming project to use blockchain for eradication of forced labor along the supply chain. He said that, although blockchain technology to fight forced labor cannot ensure companies will not indulge in such shady work practices, he believes it can create a chain of events that will encourage future compliance.
The Companies Building Blockchain Technology to Fight Forced Labor
Bitfury Group, a US technology company, will build this blockchain platform. Similarly, Emercoin will provide the blockchain services for the implementation of this project.
The Bitfury Group refers to itself as a full service blockchain technology company that wants to digitize information and transfer it globally. The company assists organizations in digitizing their assets and securely transacting money over the internet by using blockchain technology.
Emercoin states that it relies upon the original Bitcoin code to add greater flexibility to blockchain technology while ensuring the same level of inherent security and reliability. EmerDNS helps overcome any censorship for accessing websites and the company also offers different browser extensions. EmerSSH protects a server’s identity by encrypting the transmitted data and making it very difficult for anyone to obtain root certificate keys.