CHICAGO — COFCO International Ltd. announced on Dec. 20 it had joined a consortium with Archer Daniels Midland Co., Bunge Ltd., Cargill and Louis Dreyfus Co. with the joint goal of streamlining agricultural trade transactions. COFCO joins the other companies as a founding member to pursue this this agricultural initiative, which began in October.

The agribusinesses are investigating processes and technologies to standardize and digitize global agricultural shipping transactions to benefit all stakeholders. The companies also seek broad-based industry participation to promote worldwide access and adoption.

“We are pleased to join this initiative as a founding member,” said Johnny Chi, Chairman and CEO of COFCO International. “Emerging technologies like blockchain give us the opportunity to create a transparent, secure and efficient platform and transform global agricultural trade operations. Our shared vision is to develop a new standard available to everyone, bringing industry-wide benefits.”

The initiative will initially focus on automating grain and oilseed post-trade execution processes to reduce costs associated with sending transaction documents to stakeholders around the world. However, the initiative plans to look at numerous factors that could move onto a global scale and into other areas of the agricultural industry.

Companies plan increase transparency and efficiency for customers through digital technologies, such as blockchain and artificial intelligence.