Glencore joins grain merchants’ digital project

PARIS (Reuters) – Glencore Agriculture Limited has joined a project launched last year by other global grain merchants to use new technologies to raise efficiency in trading operations. The initiative was announced last October by the so-called ABCD grain majors – Archer Daniels Midland, Bunge, Cargill and Louis Dreyfus Company. It was later joined by COFCO International, the overseas trading arm of Chinese state-owned food group COFCO. In a joint statement on Thursday, Glencore and partners said that, after studying digital solutions such as blockchain and artificial intelligence, next steps would include selecting technology providers and developing a pilot covering bulk soybean shipments from Brazil to China. The partners have underlined potential gains in moving away from paper documents and emailed-based communication prevalent in grain trading towards faster digital processes. Glencore Agriculture is jointly owned by diversified commodity group Glencore and two Canadian investment funds. Reporting by Gus Trompiz; editing by Jason Neely

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