>> Working with local producers initially will provide the framework for expansion to other states in the southeast
Kelly Products, a leading Georgia agribusiness enterprise, today announced the company has started a block chain system for proteins in the southeast, starting with beef and eventually adding pork, poultry, and other animals.
Kelly Products owns numerous agribusiness and agricultural operations. President and CEO, Keith Kelly, owns and operates a 4,000-acre farm in Leesburg, Georgia where they raise grass-fed beef and heritage pork.
In 2015, Kelly started Farmview Market, a retail store in Madison, Georgia that has a large butcher shop, café, specialty grocery and farmers market. The animals from Rock House Farm are born and raised at the farm in Leesburg, transported to a local slaughter facility, and then further processed at Farmview’s butcher shop.
“Being able to track our animals through the supply chain is important in building trust with our consumers, and also makes us proud to be able to provide a safe, wholesome end product for their families to enjoy,” says Kelly.
Farmview Market works with numerous local and regional protein suppliers. Kelly wants to offer this same level of transparency to its other partners.
“We plan to start the block chain with our own animals and then expand to other members of the meat processing and supply chain across the state of Georgia and the southeast. We believe transparency and food safety are top priorities for our consumers at Farmview, as well as our state’s food system,” says Kelly.
Data collected will include information regarding each animal’s breed, sire, sex, vaccinations, weights, average daily gains, antibiotic or growth hormone use, feed and forages, farm location, changes in ownership, date slaughtered, date processed, carcass grading, etc.
“Tracking this type of data will help our state’s cattlemen develop a strong brand here in the state of Georgia, and then moving into the Southeast,” says Kelly.
Participating producers will track their cattle and livestock through RFID and this data will be collected at pre-defined intervals.
Last fall, Kelly presented at the Georgia Rural Development Council meeting in Warm Springs, Georgia about the need for the state of Georgia to develop a brand for beef and other proteins. A main priority for this program is building and strengthening a brand for Georgia beef, with a model that can be replicated in other Southeastern states.
“We are huge advocates of Georgia Grown and all that they have done for Georgia food producers. If we can provide transparency into all the protein produced in our state and region, imagine the possibilities for relating the quality of that product to consumers. Working together will make all brands stronger,” says Kelly.
Kelly is well positioned to develop a block chain system. Its software division, Kelly Registration Systems, has previously developed software for inventory management for the manufacturing industry, that is used by the company today.
“Utilizing a block chain concept, MRP-2 tracks bulk and raw materials to finished goods inventory, production and shipping of each individual component and product produce with full lot traceability into the U.S. marketplace,” said Stuart Edmondson, chief technology officer, Kelly Registration Systems.