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IBM recommends blockchain technology for cannabis regulation in British Columbia

IBM has recommended using blockchain technology to the government of British Columbia for preparing the regulatory framework in support of the legal distribution of cannabis.

“IBM suggests Blockchain is an ideal mechanism in which BC can transparently capture the history of cannabis through the entire supply chain, ultimately ensuring consumer safety while exerting regulatory control – from seed to sale,” IBM said in a report.

Using a cryptographically-secure shared ledger, blockchain irrefutably tracks complex transactions amongst many known parties. IBM said that the technology’s applicability to cannabis regulation is similar to those in the areas of pharmaceutical distribution and food chains.

“The core to those supply chains is the same, assuring health and safety of consumers, preventing fraud and counterfeiting while creating a foundation of transparency upon which to base regulation,” it added.

Underscoring the key attributes of blockchain, IBM said that the technology enables equal visibility of activities to network participants and offers traceability of an asset/product at any point in time, along with its ownership and condition/state it is in. This is made possible as the blockchain shared ledger is updated and validated in real time with each network participant.

“This type of transparency would bring a new level of visibility and control to the provincial regulators and provide assurance to the multitude of cautious stakeholders regarding the way the management of a cannabis supply chain is rolled out within British Columbia,” it added.

“Blockchain can help the Provincial Government take control of sourcing, selling and pricing of products, therefore can reduce or eliminate black market sales completely.”

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