Starbucks has partnered with Microsoft to create a new blockchain service that will enable coffee to be traced from the grower to consumer. The initiative is but one of several joint ventures between the two companies, and was announced at Microsoft’s Build conference on Monday, May 6, GeekWire reports.
Starbucks first hinted at the project last year. According to GeekWire:
The idea 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 the Starbucks mobile app to trace the journey of their coffee from the farm where the beans originate all the way to their cup.
The initiative is part of Starbuck’s ongoing efforts to incorporate digital technology into its operations, a long-term project that includes using machine learning to provide a more personalized experience for drive-thru customers and cloud-connected coffee makers at the company’s stores.
The company has said that its blockchain coffee tracing program will be open-source, so that it can share its findings. Meanwhile, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has praised Starbucks for its commitment to cutting-edge technologies:
“They are coming together to completely take what is that iconic experience that is Starbucks and incorporating digital throughout.”