Thesis subject

Blockchain and IoT enabled smart agriculture and food traceability

Level: MSc

Research area/discipline: Software Engineering

Prerequisites: Programming in Python (INF-22306) and/or Software Engineering (INF-32306) and/or Big Data (INF-33806).

Short description:

The application of blockchain technology in different sectors has been gaining an increasing attention recently both in academia and industry. Blockchain is seen by some as particularly promising in the area of smart agriculture and agri-food applications, since through blockchain a large number of self-interested actors can be connected and coordinated in a secure, transparent and decentralized manner. One example is food traceability management which is needed to tackle the “food safety” problem. To address the food safety problem from a technical perspective, a trusted food traceability system can be used to track and monitor the whole lifespan of food production, including the processes of food raw material cultivation/breeding, processing, transporting, warehousing, and retailing. IoT devices can be used to reduce actors intervention without compromising their control over the system. This thesis will dive into this topic and contribute to a better understanding of blockchain use cases in smart agriculture in the Netherlands.

Tasks:

  1. To survey the different use cases of blockchain for smart agriculture in the Netherlands.
  2. To identify the relevance, applicability, challenges, opportunities and barriers to implement blockchain for smart agriculture in the Netherlands.
  3. To determine whether, and if so, which form of blockchain technology should be used for each specified application.

Required skills/knowledge:

Knowledge and interest about blockchain, IoT, smart agriculture and agri-food.

Relevant literature:

  • Ge, Lan, et al. Blockchain for agriculture and food: Findings from the pilot study. No. 2017-112. Wageningen Economic Research, 2017.
  • Antonucci, Francesca, et al. "A review on blockchain applications in the agri‐food sector." Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 99.14 (2019): 6129-6138.
  • Fu, Hao, et al. "Blockchain-based agri-food supply chain management: case study in China." International Food and Agribusiness Management Review (2020): 1-14.

For more information:

For making an appointment to discuss the thesis topic, please send an email to: Dr.Ir. Tarek AlSkaif | Assistant Professor | Information Technology group (INF) | Wageningen University & Research (WUR) | https://www.wur.nl/en/Persons/Tarek-dr.-T-Tarek-Alskaif.htm | tarek.alskaif@wur.nl