University of Wyoming's College of Agriculture established Sheepchain in 2021. SheepChain aspires to fulfill the need for reliable and transparent supply chain information on behalf of producers and consumers alike.
The manufacturing of food and fiber products in the United States has become more complex due to the increased number of intermediaries between the initial producer and the final consumer.
At the same time, each generation has become more removed from production agriculture causing them to become less informed about production practices and to have an increased need for reliable and transparent market and production information. As a result of these generational shifts, the labeling claims and related information on food and fiber products have come to hold more weight in consumer choices. In addition to consumers wanting more reliable and transparent information, there is also a need in the supply chain for this type of data. Not only will it provide the producers and intermediaries with a trusted history of goods, but it will allow them to use this data to market their products in a unique way.
Blockchain technology is able to track and store reliable, transparent data from all stages of the production process. The University of Wyoming sees opportunity for the integration of blockchain technology into the American lamb industry that will provide the opportunity for value-added products. Not only will it allow for intricate traceability in the breeding livestock, meat, and wool sectors of the industry, but the blockchain system will allow for more information to be available from those in the production sector, ultimately leading to value-added products.