Tech

Derek Tonin

India uses blockchain technology to improve coffee trade

Many coffee drinkers take their cup of java very seriously, and like to know where the beans came from and how they were prepared. To help satisfy that urge for knowledge, the Coffee Board of India has turned to a blockchain-based online marketplace.

The initiative was announced by Commerce Secretary Dr. Anup Wadhawan, and publicized through the Press Information Bureau of India’s website. The goal of the site is to bring coffee farmers closer to the market, and reduce the number of middlemen involved in the process. As a result, they also hope to reduce costs and provide a better price for coffee producers.

The announcement notes that Indian coffee is recognized as one of the best in the world, and produced primarily by small-time farmers. Although it’s sold at premium prices, “The share of farmers in the final returns from coffee is very meagre,” according to the Coffee Board. This blockchain solution seeks to solve that problem.

The Coffee Board is teaming up with M/s Eka Plus to develop the blockchain marketplace application, as they are one of the world’s leaders in digital platforms for agriculture. They’ve already developed an app and distributed it to as many as 20 coffee farmers, exporters, roasters, importers and retailers to get this process started.

This improvement to the Indian coffee trade won’t only improve profits for the people who are the most responsible for its success, but guarantee for vendors and customers that they are buying the real thing. This type of improvement for supply chains is becoming increasingly more common thanks to blockchain technology.

Ailsa Bay, a scotch whiskey brand, also recently turned to the new technology to monitor their supply chain. Counterfeit whiskey has been a big problem for the UK industry, causing losses of £218 million (over $288 million) to distilleries. Through blockchain improvements to their supply chain, they will guarantee, much as the Indian Coffee Board has, that the producers of the tasty drink will see the full profits of their labor.

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