Dr. Marcel Müller
October 12, 2021

Blockchain for Track and Trace in Logistics and Supply Chain

The Problem: Trust-aware Collaboration between Businesses

In today’s logistics processes, inter-organizational delivery services often require strict end-to-end service level agreements (SLAs). However, these SLAs lack transparency and trustful mechanisms for tracking deliveries outside of organizational boundaries. To ensure accountability and reliable enforcement of SLAs, a traceable responsibility structure needs to be put in place that eliminates any possibility of circumventing penalties due to lack of monitoring. End-to-end monitoring is essential for companies to maintain effective control over their transportation services and the delivery of goods.

The Solution: Blockchain as a common Source of Truth

The blockchain for logistics (BfL) project uses blockchain and IoT devices to track the conditions of parcels in real-time. The blockchain transparently tracks the responsibility in the supply chain.

Our contribution: Deep Tech for Cross-Company Collaboration

The Center for Deep Tech innovation started out with a Proof of Concept and made it to end-to-end productive implementation. This includes:

  • Consulting and requirements specification
  • System design
  • Setup of a private permissioned Ethereum blockchain network (Quorum)
  • Implementing Smart Contracts
  • Building Backend- and Middleware-Services in Java
  • Authentication and Authorization using Auth0
  • A cross-platform mobile application with React Native to scan parcels and interact with the backend
  • A responsive web application as a dashboard for users to track their parcels and see the status of their contents
  • Integration of the IoT platform of our customers


We published two peer-reviewed articles on the subject: HIDALS and a paper on Blockchain-Based Trusted Cross-organizational Deliveries of Sensor-Equipped Parcels.


Project Users: Several logistics companies including Poste Italiane (Italian state-owned post) and Schiphol Container Services (Amsterdam Airport)

Technology Used

Java (backend), Ethereum (blockchain), React.js (web application), React Native (mobile application)

The Impact: Improved Logistics Processes

The project delivered software products that are used by major logistics companies, harbors, and end-users across Europe. The BfL application is used for pharmaceutical deliveries, food ordering, and sending of other perishable or high-value goods.

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