Workshop – Food fraud prevention using Blockchain technology

POR EM Inovação em Pauta

09 Sep 2019 to 12 Sep 2019

Brazil,Sao Paulo

After Europe’s horsemeat scandal, Brazil, is going through a serious food-fraud crisis aftermath of 2017-18 meat scandal (Reuter 2018).  This scandal hit agri-food, one of Brazil’s largest economic sectors very hard. Food fraud is not just limited to Brazil, according to the WHO almost one in ten people become ill every year from eating contaminated food, with 420,000 dying as a result. Global food supply chain has many blind spots which is difficult to guarantee the provenance of their products and adulteration of its ingredients. Public policy exists to protect consumers, but ill-designed regulations and weak enforcement can lead to market failures. The current food safety and quality management systems are not sophisticated enough to prevent fraud.

What can be done to bring trust back into our food system? We need to move from an institutional centric to a distributed decentralized approval system of trust based on the deployment of Blockchain technology. Blockchain is a decentralized digital ledger which records transactions and stores this information on a global network in a manner which prevents it being changed. This can ensure transparency and traceability of the food supply chains, hence prevention of potential fraud.

The Food fraud prevention using Blockchain technology: Workshop seeks to address transparency in food supply chain that will enable Brazilian food stakeholders to offer safe, secure and hygienic food. This will be achieved through a four-days’ workshop bringing together both experienced and early career researchers to explore the adoption of blockchain technology in support of supply chain; examine different means to build transparency and traceability mechanism to strengthen the linkages in the food chain, and identify future collaboration. The aim is to identify suitable approaches to detect bottlenecks in the food supply as well as improve the resilience to cope with food fraud; enhancing trust among multiagency stakeholders; and the ways to offer traceable logistical support.

The organisers would like to invite Early Career Researchers from the UK and Brazil to apply to attend this workshop.

The objectives are:

  • To explore the dynamics of different stakeholders across the food chain
  • To identify the benefits and challenges of adopting blockchain in food supply chain challenges
  • To identify a simplified and practical toolkit to use blockchain food supply chain;
  • To highlight future research opportunities in the area

The objectives will be achieved via interactive sessions to share knowledge, experience and ideas:

  • Keynote lectures by workshop coordinators and mentors
  • Research sessions where early career researchers can share their current research
  • Opportunities for networking to allow researchers to interact and explore opportunities for collaboration
  • Mentor-led overviews of the research base, links with organizations and funding opportunities;
  • Field trips or engagement trips to stakeholder organizations to understand the challenges on the ground
  • Invited talks from supply chain stakeholders to explore cross-chain collaboration.

This research workshop is being conducted under the “Researcher Links” scheme, funded by the Newton Fund and in collaboration with the British Council and the São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP). It offers an excellent opportunity for early career researchers from the UK and internationally to interact, learn from each other and explore opportunities for building long-lasting research collaborations.

As such for this workshop event, early career researchers will have the opportunity to present in the topical area in the form of a short presentation. They will be able to discuss this with established researchers from the UK and Brazil with a focus on building links for future research collaborations. Participants will be selected based on their research potential and ability to build longer term links.

In order to attend, participants should adhere and make note of the following: 

  • Participants must be early career researchers: Early Career Researchers are defined as holding a PhD (or having equivalent research experience) and having up to 10 years post-PhD research experience.
  • Participants must have a research or academic position (a permanent post, research contract, or fellowship etc.) at a recognised research institution either in the UK or in Brazil
  • Please note that participants are expected to attend all sessions of the workshop

In assessing applications, the experience and relevance of the applicant’s research area to the workshop will be considered as well as motivation and contribution to the aims of the workshop. It is also expected that applications will be able to describe the long-term impact expected through the participation in the workshop including dissemination activity of the workshop’s outcomes.

The workshop will be coordinated by a team of highly experienced academics/researchers led by Dr Manoj Dora (Brunel University London, UK) and Dr. Luiz Carlos Di Serio, Fundação Getulio Vargas – Escola de Administração de Empresas de São Paulo, Brazil. In addition, four leading edge and established academics/researchers will be facilitating, mentoring and steering the outcome of the workshop:

  • UK:
    • Prof Kulwant Pawar (Nottingham University)
    • Prof Nachiappan Subramanian (University of Sussex)
  • Brazil:
    • Dr Susana Carla Farias Pereira (Fundação Getulio Vargas)
    • Dr Priscila Laczynski de Souza Miguel (Fundação Getulio Vargas)

Venue, travel and organisation details

All travel and accommodation expenses will be covered by the “Researcher Links” programme including travel (both international and local travel within Brazil), accommodation and meals. Costs for the visa will be covered; however, participants will be responsible for making all the necessary arrangements. Although this cost will not be covered by the British Council, participants are encouraged to purchase an adequate travel and medical insurance. The British Council accepts no responsibility for any problems which may occur when the participants are in-country.

Equal Opportunities

Equal opportunities and diversity are at the heart of the British Council’s cultural relations ambitions. While recognising that some research fields are dominated by one particular gender, co-ordinators are encouraged to work towards an equal gender balance, promote diversity. They must not exclude applicants on the basis of ethnicity, gender, religious belief, sexual orientation, or disability. Participants’ selection undertaken by workshop organisers must not contravene this policy. Extra support to enable participation of Early Career Researchers with special needs will be given.

Application deadline and notification of results

The full application form must be completed and submitted by to the event organisers and by the deadline date of 15 May 2019. You can download the application form here.

Applicants will be notified by email 2 months prior to the workshop.

UK coordinator: Dr Manoj Dora, Brunel Business School, Brunel University London, UK:

Brazil coordinator: Dr Luiz Carlos Di Serio, Fundação Getulio Vargas – Escola de Administração de Empresas de São Paulo, Brazil: