Swiss airport ground handling and cargo company Swissport is launching a blockchain pilot program for its cargo handling business, Air Cargo News reported May 29. The company is launching a pilot program in cooperation with Olam, a non-profit organization aiming to develop an open source platform for supply chain partners.

Hendrik Leyssens, head of global cargo operations at Swissport, said that blockchain could speed up transactions, improve security, and help reduce operational costs. He added:

“Thinking beyond traditional messaging, blockchain could eventually become the new standard allowing us to overcome the chronic lack of transparency, which is typical for fragmented supply chains.”

In addition to the cargo handling, Swissport will also apply its blockchain pilot program to its passenger services business by partnering with Winding Tree, a blockchain-based travel distribution platform. The partnership will initially focus on applying blockchain technology to the distribution of classic travel services to independent travelers, such as airport lounge access. Florian Eggenschwiler, who supervises Swissport’s innovation unit, said:

“We expect to see lasting benefits from this technology for fragmented global industries like aviation services and supply chain. It will likely change how service providers, clients and partners will transact with each other. We want to get familiar with such technologies early in the innovation cycle and partner with technology leaders to explore its potential in our business for a variety of use cases.”

Blockchain has been gaining traction in the supply chain and logistics industry in the past months. Recently, a US transport giant Norfolk Southern Corp. announced it is joining the Blockchain in Transport Alliance (BiTA), which aims to popularize and develop blockchain applications in the transport and logistics industries.

Walmart announced in April that it is ready to use blockchain technology in its live food business, which will help the company to reduce waste, as well as improve contamination management and transparency.