Starbucks, a leading coffee maker in the United States, has announced its partnership with Microsoft, a technology giant, to put coffee production on the blockchain.
Bean To Cup Initiative With Blockchain
Since last year, the coffee maker has been sitting on plans to work with coffee farmers in Rwanda, Costa Rica, and Colombia, to fuel its “bean to cup” initiative which allows coffee to be tracked using blockchain technology. This system, notes Starbucks, will help farmers to trace their coffee and have positive financial impacts on the farmer.
According to Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft:
“They are coming together to completely take what is that iconic experience that is Starbucks and incorporating digital throughout.”
More than tracking coffee from farmers, Starbucks is projecting to build a “predictive drive-thru ordering” across different cafes by using IOT-enabled devices. Microsoft will be using its Azure platform to help the coffee maker reach its goals.
Azure was developed by Microsoft to be a blockchain-as-a service (BaaS) avenue which the technology giant flaunts to streamline consortium blockchain networks’ usage. Quorum, an Ethereum-based project developed by JP Morgan, recently boarded Azure.
Starbucks is not stopping at tracking coffee. It also crosses over to the cryptocurrency space. The coffee maker is reportedly considering accepting Bitcoin payments in conjunction with Bakkt, a US-based virtual currency trading platform. However, even if Starbucks accepts BTC, it will not handle crypto since Bakkt will process the crypto payments and deliver it in fiat.
As noted by GeekWire, the partnership between Starbucks and Microsoft:
“Is to ultimately connect coffee drinkers with coffee farmers, who can potentially then take advantage of new financial opportunities. And customers will be able to use their Starbucks mobile app to trace the journey of their coffee from the farm where the beans originate all the way to their cup.”
By using Microsoft Azure, which is cloud-based, it will allow the coffee maker to quickly update its menu which is much easier than sending information in USB drives for manual upload a “process that would take weeks.”