“In the 21st century, your supply chain is your brand,” says Killian Stokes, university professor and co-founder of Moyee Coffee Ireland, a green tech coffee company with big ambitions – to disrupt the global business model of industry.
Blockchain – which first entered mainstream notoriety as the digital network underlying the rise and fall of the cryptocurrency mania – has become a catalyst for this disruption.
A supply chain tracked and traced with the blockchain benefits from two key advantages: more transparency and traceability. From back-end inventory to front-end customer experience, the implications are huge: every aspect of production and the supply chain journey can be laid bare.
Moyee Coffee decided to use blockchain to track their supply chain after looking at the certification options that exist: “We looked at Rainforest Alliance, FairTrade, all of those great certifications. But a lot of them have limits and costs are involved, ”says Stokes.
“Blockchain can allow businesses to go way beyond smoke and mirrors or greenwashing and get real numbers – the data. We can show all the stakeholders where the carbon has been added and where the money has gone. It’s locked so everyone can see it and no one can change it. It is 100% transparency. ”
“We can connect with consumers and digitize every transaction in the value chain – the journey and the entire process.”
Instead of relying on intermediary organizations for audits, challenger brands like Moyee Coffee can use blockchain to run their own supply chain sustainability audit and share data for every step of their value chain.
A supply chain tracked and traced with blockchain enables consumers to connect and understand the product they are buying in ways previously impossible.
Moyee Coffee can show her buyers exactly how their coffee is grown: “Before you buy coffee, you can pull out your phone, zap a QR code, and you can see how much the farmer was paid for the bag of coffee in your store. hand, and we can share stories and videos to show you how our coffee grows in a forest.
“We can take our customers on the journey with us, and the force of that is powerful. It gives all stakeholders a level of credibility, ”says Stokes.
“What is the feedback on your consumer actions and how can we best articulate your impact? I am confident that focusing on the right storytelling and the story will bring us a bigger tribe.”
Moyee Coffee uses blockchain to track coffee transactions and transportation from farmers’ fields in Ethiopia to supermarkets in Europe – bringing an unprecedented level of transparency to an industry that generally underpays and oversells.
However, adding data to the blockchain to trace every mile of the supply chain is not without its challenges: “You are in the mountains of Ethiopia with poor farmers who do not have much education or who have a smartphone, and the connectivity isn’t great. But they are very open to learning how to work with cell phones and getting paid digitally. We offer them to pay them 10% more for the digital payment, that’s a pretty strong incentive, so I can see us scanning the first mile. “explains Stokes.
“At the other end of the spectrum, in a London supermarket, consumers all have cell phones in their back pockets. They have 4 and 5G, but they have so much noise in their life. They have the technology, but they don’t have the culture in terms of, why are they going to use our blockchain or our app? This challenge is linked to motivation. It is an aspiration to the brand. You have to tap into what’s important to them, and you have to move them, inspire them and tell stories, ”Stokes says.
What Moyee Coffee hopes will inspire customer loyalty are the brand’s aspirations to challenge the operating processes within the global coffee industry and demonstrate that there is a better way to brew.
Most coffee growers are among the poorest in the world: in an industry primarily controlled by conglomerates, systemic incongruity in the distribution of supply chain value means that farmers often earn only 1 to 2 % of what the end consumer pays for coffee.
Moyee Coffee promises to change this business model by “transforming and roasting coffee in the coffee belt. This will put more coffee value, jobs and income back into the coffee belt.” They also grow coffee in forests, not in fields, to preserve the land, promote biodiversity, offset emissions and rejuvenate the local environment.
“The environment the product comes from is part of your brand’s offering,” Stokes says, “coffee is a major cause of environmental destruction, we believe it should be a force for good”.
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