In the hot beverage industry, coffee deserves a special mention owing to its large market size and business potential. Sample the statistic – on average, coffee takers consume in excess to half-trillion cups per year. The number is mind-boggling and signifies the importance of this industry to a variety of stakeholders.
Supply Chain in the Coffee Industry
The important parties involved in the process of bringing coffee to customers include coffee growing farmers, suppliers, associations, distributors, and retailers. The supply chain is complex and the addition of more intermediaries – such as agents in case of coffee is imported or exported – makes the process even more complicated. Add to this the growing awareness and conscious of the consumers towards the sustainability practices and the process become even more convoluted.
The most disheartening aspect of the supply chain is the margins that farmers receive for their coffee and now, in order to change the situation, the focus has been shifted towards blockchain technology. We are well aware of the various advantages offered by the blockchain and the global tech giant IBM is doing wonderful work in integrating blockchain to enhance the efficiency of the coffee supply chain across the globe.
Thank My Farmer Initiative
The company has collaborated with Farmer Connect and come up with a new mobile application – called “Thank My Farmer.” This specifically designed blockchain application helps the customers to trace the origin of the coffee to have a better understanding of the quality of the beans and the environment in which the coffee is being produced. Using this app, customers can also donate to help the farmer economically. This platform not only empowers customers by helping them to trace the coffee origin but also becomes a tool for providing monetary support to them.
Just so you know, the Farmer Connect is a platform of one of its kind, which is extensively used in the traceability of coffee and has been designed in close collaboration with a number of global coffee-producing federations and organizations. It has been powered by the blockchain technology of IBM and the result of this collaboration is expected to do wonders for the entire coffee industry. The distinctive characteristics of blockchain, which include open ledger and immutability, are going to be very helpful in ensuring the authenticity and transparency of the data related to the entire supply chain of the coffee industry. This data can be shared across the value chain and all the stakeholders involved in the process including customer can access this data at any point in time. This enhanced traceability is also very useful for supply chain partners in order to know the real-time status of production and shipping operations in the value chain.
In sum, the adoption of blockchain in the coffee industry has two-fold benefits – it provides customers’ the ability to trace the source of coffee beans to ensure its quality while helping supply chain partners to check the real-time status of the various operations associated with production and distribution of coffee. The blockchain also helps the farmers to receive fare-price of their products in addition to channelizing the flow of money and information in a more efficient and conducive manner.