The U.S. Trade Representative recently released a document about 2017 Notorious Markets List that highlights 25 online markets and 18 physical markets. The well-known Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba is top on the list. 

With Chinese consumers increasing their favors for overseas products, some vendors in China have evil ideas to make fake imported products in local factories and sell on e-commerce platforms like Tmall, Taobao, and JD...etc.


Don't be fooled by vendors.

The counterfeit problems seriously bother Jack Ma for quite a long time, Alibaba Group has Tmall and Taobao for e-commerce, both two platforms directly connect retail vendors to consumers. 

Tmall - not seriously infected by fake items  

Most shops on Tmall are owned by a company and sells products of well-known brands, they have physical offline stores, vendors are required to provide enough certificates like the business license, 3C, inspection report and so on. 

The registration fee could be up to 300,000RMB, not including the coming operation fees once the shop has been set up, this standard stops a lot of people opening a shop on Tmall, therefore, the counterfeit problems are still not too serious there. 

Taobao  - Biggest headache  

Unlike Tmall, fake items are common to be found on Taobao, since shopkeepers have a low threshold to register an online shop there. For individuals, just spending 1,000 RMB you can have your own Taobao store. Even the ranking on their site is unreliable, through the help of friends or paying someone, data of reviews and order records can be created and tampered, Taobao is flooded with fake products and data. 

Counterfeit has become an industrial problem for e-commerce in China, meanwhile, China becomes more open to import, stringent and specific implementation to supervise on the supply chain is in urgent.

No worries, the counterfeit era is dying with the launch of traceability system!

Alibaba announced it’s going to begin experimenting a digital traceability system that’s a sort of giant global spreadsheet, to track genuine products through the supply chain. The traceability system aims to track the entire supply chain of imported products with big data through blockchain technologies. 

The idea is that the vendors on Alibaba’s Taobao and Tmall with a collective 443 million active shoppers, will be able to verify the authenticity of the item using this system, thereby squeezing out the dangerous fakes!

The traceability system is supported by parties from different countries. Data in the system is created and shared by worldwide governments, customs, manufactures, inspection organization, transportation company, wholesalers, retailers, terminal platform... etc, there is no border, no limit for tracking overseas products.


Image: Under this system, information of the manufacturer, customs, overseas and domestic inspection, transportation, all is transparent.

One of the key features of this system is ‘immutability’ – the fact that tampering with or erasing any information, transaction or record is impossible due to its advanced encryption technology, the core value of blockchain technology.  

The system will be launched in 63 countries and regions around the world and will cover 3,700 product categories and 14,500 overseas brands.

The blockchain technology fundamentally changes the worldwide business environment!

Bitcoin and other so-called cryptocurrencies, the first application of blockchain allow international transfer freely, its second application smart contract kicks out intermediaries involving in business activities. 

For years of development, we stand on a much higher milestone, another application of blockchain, the traceability system connects all parties in a supply chain to fight against the fakes! 


Image: The traceability system.

By scanning the barcode and entering the 6 digits tracking code, consumers can check the authenticity of the product.

1. Using Alipay, Mobile Taobao or Tmall to scan the barcode on the product


2. Scratching the label to see 6 digits tracking code.


3. Entering the tracking code on the bar.


4. More information about the product can be seen.


Now, imported foods almost have labeled the traceabilty barcode, you should beware well of those without the traceability sign!

Not only Alibaba, Guangdong also has its own traceability system on general trading.

January 8th, a global quality traceability system developed and introduced by Guangdong Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau has started service in Foshan.


Image: Google.

According to Zhong Haiwei, director of Shunde Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau, the new system aims to expand the supervision on the growing number of imported products and ensure the high quality of the overseas products imported from the ports in Guangdong.

With the wide use of traceability system, China's serious counterfeit problem is expected to be gradually solved and the applications ofblockchain technology lead the world rapidly evolving and do not stand still! 

Source:  阿里技术, Reuter, GDToday, techinasia