• Smart brew

    Smart brew

    A coffee producer is using blockchain to enable consumers to trace their java – from the shop they bought it from to its Ugandan plantation of origin.

    Established in the East African country in 2016, Carico Cafe Connoisseur sources its beans from small-scale farmers and co-operatives across East Africa, and encourages those farmers to practice sustainable harvesting and processing. It has implemented the digital ledger to ‘give the consumer an appreciation of what happens on the journey and also to ensure that there are more linkages with the farmer’, says Carico CEO Mwambu Wanendeya, as reported by Reuters.

    By scanning the coffee packaging’s QR code via smartphone, consumers can access information that includes where and when the beans were harvested; the bean type; the date on which farmers delivered the beans to the collection centre; and when they were shipped.

    Wanendeya expects this move could boost farmers’ incomes by as much as 10%. ‘Consumers are willing to pay more if they can know where exactly the coffee is coming from,’ he says. Carico’s coffee is sold in South Africa, the US, Switzerland and other countries.

    5 February 2019
    Image: Gallo/Getty Images