Starbucks Using Microsoft’s Azure Blockchain To Track Coffee Production

Blockchain, News | May 8, 2019 By:

Tech giant Microsoft has partnered with international coffee chain Starbucks to track coffee production using the Azure Blockchain Service.

In March 2018, Starbucks announced a blockchain pilot program with select coffee farmers in Costa Rica, Colombia and Rwanda to develop next-level data technology to log and share real-time information along the journey of coffee beans with the aim of driving positive impact to small holder farmers within its supply chain. Earlier this year, Starbucks previewed a coffee traceability feature for its mobile app that lets customers scan a bag of coffee and trace their brew at various supply chain stages, from bean to cup.

During last week’s Microsoft Build 2019 conference, the coffee company announced that its “bean to cup” program will now be utilizing Microsoft’s recently announced fully-managed blockchain service, Azure Blockchain Service, which creates a transparent electronic ledger over which supply chain participants can input transactional data.

Microsoft’s Azure Blockchain Service will reportedly allow supply chain participants to trace both the movement of their coffee and its transformation from bean to final bag. Each state change is recorded to a shared, immutable ledger providing all parties a more complete view of their products’ journey.

“While high-quality, handcrafted beverages are so important, it’s the stories, the people, the connections, the humanity behind that coffee that inspires everything we do,” said Michelle Burns, Starbucks senior vice president of Global Coffee & Tea. “This kind of transparency offers customers the chance to see that the coffee they enjoy from us is the result of many people caring deeply.”

The two companies also announced a number of initiatives they are working on together, including predictive drive-thru ordering and connecting Internet-of-Things (IoT)-enabled equipment at different cafe locations.