NFTs applied in supply chains: How are they being used?

In this article for NFTexpress I will share with you some brands and applications that are starting to use NFT to solve different problems such as: authenticity verification or product traceability.

Mostly we relate NFTs to collections of images, videos or other types of formats. We also tend to associate them with artists who venture into this ecosystem with their works of art in digital format.

However, companies that use supply chains to keep track of their products are innovating in the NFT industry, which, thanks to its technology, offers benefits that traditional systems do not.

For example, Jamaica Blue Mountain is one of the most expensive coffees in the world, since it is cultivated from extremely rare coffee beans that are located in the volcanic area of the Blue Mountains of Jamaica. Furthermore, its scarcity and rich aroma is highly demanded. Consequently, it is also the most sought after coffee for fraudulent trade and counterfeiting.

In supply chains, this is a common problem because they rely particularly on scarce and luxury items. Also, health-related products, such as medicines or even all kinds of foodstuffs, suffer from these drawbacks.

The methods for detecting counterfeit products are often inadequate and unsophisticated, which is why NFTs and their underlying technology come into play.

One of Jamaica’s exporting companies Blue Mountain called Oubucreated an efficient solution using blockchain technology to prove the authenticity of its coffee beans. The Copenhagen, Denmark-based company assigned an NFT to each barrel of coffee, where metadata includes product details such as harvesting, grading and transportation. This is generated thanks to blockchain technology that powers the non-fungible tokens and consequently, end users can track their coffee beans through unique codes.

As a result of all this innovation, customers have the certainty that the coffees are genuine and authentic. In addition, small local farmers have the opportunity to establish different commercial relationships with this great company in the long term.

NFTs and the supply chain

Whether it’s coffee, such as fashion items, a bottle of wine or exclusive jewelry, each product in the system receives its own NFT with additional information provided in its metadata, this enables operators and supply chain managers to monitor the journey of your products.

Each product, whatever its form, receives a certification of authenticity and provenance recorded on the blockchain in an unalterable way. Chai Vault, a wine and spirits manufacturer already has certificates on blockchain to solve fraud issues, you can learn more here.

Other technology companies focused on solving supply chain problems through NFT solutions are working steadily.

Everledgeris another organization that is constantly innovating through non-fungible tokens. It consists in allowing its customers to create NFTs without encryption knowledge thanks to Everledger’s identity that aggregates product metadata and a minting service. Finally, it uses the Proof of Authority (PoA) consensus to reduce the costs of minting NFTs and where only network validators are approved to validate transactions.

Linking physical products to NFTs in the most reliable manner

There are several ways to generate this trust for linking physical products with non-fungible tokens. For its part, Everledger uses smart tags interlinking mobile devices with the objective of enabling traceability and starting point tracking.

Another well-known technology is called NFC (near field communication). This technique is a common way to tag products and attach them to NFTs. Although NFCs are similar to QR codes, the latter are easier to copy, since an NFC tag is stored with a key that is used to generate a unique code on each scan. These codes are verifiable on servers that prove the authenticity of the physical object to which it was linked.

NFC technology works similarly to NFTs in that NFTs do not store the implicit asset, but only the link to it. NFC does not contain the NFT; instead, it only creates a link to the physical product behind that scan.

Another tagging method for linking physical products with NFTs is RFID (radio frequency identification), which compared to NFC, which requires scanning via a smartphone over a short distance, RFID technology works over longer distances and scans multiple tags at the same time.


Understanding that technologies such as NFC or RFID are clear efficient proofs to attach physical and genuine products, it must be understood that NFTs end up encompassing a more interesting and complete solution which is immutability in the blockchain. Non-fungible tokens are not only unique but also immutable, since all transactions related to that product can be fully monitored on the blockchain.

Finally, the other benefit of NFTs is that companies can build strong connections with their customers/users, because we know that today they are an integral part of today’s culture and ownership of things is increasingly present in them.

Written by Rodrigo Catalan (TW: @RodrigoCatalanB) for NFT Express.