Bundy watermelon farmer brings trace tech to fruition

watermelon blockchain technology
Andrew Martens from Marto Farms has unveiled new technology allowing consumers to trace his fruit from paddock to plate.

In an Australian first a Bundaberg farmer has introduced innovative blockchain technology on his watermelon labels to help buyers throughout the country trace the origin of the fruit.

Andrew Martens, from Marto Farms, partnered with traceability and consumer trust technology company FreshChain Systems to deliver the “blockchain end-to-end consumer traceability and marketing system”, allowing customers to understand the process from paddock to plate.

“The world has changed and people simply want to know more about their food, it’s location and those who produce it,” Andrew said.

“I started to work this out when I began doing some talks with Bundy Food Tours and at first I thought, who wants to listen to me rabbit on about fruit?

“Surprisingly, people do care and want to know all about how you grow, why you grow and everything else in between.”

Watermelon blockchain technology: how does it work?

According to Andrew, its as simple as scanning the label on your watermelon.

“Consumers can simply scan a QR code on our seedless melons label to see detailed information on the harvest, conditions, certifications and handy hints relating to that specific melon,” he said.

“There is also a chance for the consumer to rate the produce and leave any comments and feedback.”

Andrew said the new technology was a great opportunity to showcase world class products, passions and farming practices.

Marto Farms.

“We are inviting consumers to learn more about the product they are buying which will only enhance our offer and create long lasting connection and loyalty in both local and export markets,” he said.

“Our future plans is to roll this out to our other produce and then, hopefully this goes global for all farmers to participate in.”

Andrew said farming had always been a part of his life and he was excited with the changes and innovation that lay ahead.

“My old man has always been in this space, especially watermelons, it has been his thing for the pat 40 years,” he said.

“I suppose the apple doesn't fall too far from the tree as they say and I picked it up and it became a passion of mine over the past twenty years!”

Greg Calvert, founding Director at FreshChain, congratulated Andrew on his watermelon blockchain technology initiative.

watermelon blockchain technology
All picked and ready to go! Watermelons at Marto Farms.

“It takes real foresight with a practical sense to be able to achieve what Andrew, his family and his team have done at Marto Farms,” he said.

“We want consumers to make an informed decision on their choice of products – to choose products produced responsibly, by growers who are passionate about what they do.

“Blockchain technology allows us to share reliable information with consumers in an accessible way.

“Our goal with FreshChain is to become the global standard for end to end traceability and consumer connection and what better place to help realise that vision than in the food bowl of Bundaberg, Queensland.

To find out more about Marto Farms, head to the Facebook page here.

Marto Farms watermelons are available locally from Foodworks stores.