On April 6, Nestlé announced that the company is expanding its long-running IBM Food Trust blockchain technology platform to its coffee brand Zoégas.
Getting all necessary coffee info from blockchain database
With this new implementation, Zoégas coffee lovers will now be able to trace select coffee editions back to different origins in Brazil, Rwanda and Colombia, the company said. Additionally, consumers will be able to access some relevant coffee information including time and location of harvest, roasting period, transaction certificate for the specific shipments, farmers, via scanning the QR code on the packaging.
Nestlé partners with the Rainforest Alliance on development
According to the announcement, Zoégas' integration with the IBM Food Trust platform became possible after Nestlé partnered with a trusted third party, the Rainforest Alliance.
Representing a non-governmental organization focusing on sustainable forestry and agriculture, the Rainforest Alliance will be responsible for providing reliable data that will allow users to follow the coffee journey to the Zoégas factory in Helsingborg. Under the partnership, the organization will purportedly provide its own certification information about the coffee and record the data directly on the IBM Food Trust blockchain platform.
Nestlé joined Walmart-founded IBM Food Trust in 2017
As reported by Cointelegraph, tech giant IBM launched its Food Trust in October 2018 with the purpose of bolstering food safety with blockchain. The project dates back to 2016, when IBM started collaborating with retail giant Walmart on blockchain technology to identify and remove recalled foods. As reported, the IBM Food Trust included 10 companies as founding members at launch, including Nestlé, Dole Food Co., Driscoll’s Inc. and Golden State Foods.
Nestlé admitted that its blockchain venture was more challenging than other projects
The IBM Food Trust isn’t Nestlé’s sole blockchain foray. As Cointelegraph reported, the Switzerland-headquartered food retail giant has been also involved in a joint blockchain pilot with WWF-Australia and BCG Digital Ventures, designed to trace milk from producers in New Zealand to Nestlé’s factories. In August 2019, Nestlé Australia’s “Chain of Origin” project of blockchain-powered supply chain management was also reportedly nominated for a digital transformation award by the International Data Corporation.
As the world’s largest food and beverage firm, Nestlé purportedly encountered a number of issues on its path of adopting blockchain technology. In September 2019, Nestlé Digital Technology Manager Armin Nehzat admitted that its blockchain venture has been more challenging than other projects, urging that the company had to adopt a “start-up mindset” to move ahead in that direction.