Today EY announced that Italian beer brand Birra Peroni is using the EY OpsChain Traceability on the public Ethereum blockchain for supply chain traceability. The solution mints nonfungible tokens (NFTs), which are unique to each batch of beer.
“For Birra Peroni, the bond with the agricultural supply chain and the quality of our 100% made-in-Italy malt are fundamental strategic assets,” said Federico Sannella, Corporate Affairs Director, Birra Peroni. “We believe that sustainability is deeply related to the respect for the raw material, and we wanted to bring this value alive to our consumers, allowing them to follow the journey of the malt from the field to the bottle.”
While nonfungible tokens gained mainstream attention through sports collectibles and art, they’re also used to track goods. Luxury brands are especially keen to demonstrate an item is authentic and food brands are no different. Apart from proving an item isn’t counterfeit, blockchain can also provide end-to-end traceability, which is a non trivial task for lengthy supply chains. This addresses the rising consumer demand to know how goods are sourced.
In the food sector, to date blockchain traceability has mainly been adopted by three distinct groups. The first is high value items such as fish or seafood and meat. Some items may not be costly but carry a food safety concern, such as lettuce, prone to E.coli contamination, or baby products. Finally, there are upmarket brands where Asahi-owned Birra Peroni comes in.
Birra Peroni isn’t the first beer brand to look at tracing for sustainability. AB InBev, which owns Stella Artois and Budweiser, uses blockchain to demonstrate barley sustainability, from barley field to bar.
Meanwhile, EY OpsChain Traceability is designed to address those lengthy supply chains and integrate with enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems via APIs. The consultants have also requested an update to Ethereum to track the physical location of assets more easily.
“We envision a future where everything from inventory to purchase orders to invoices can be tokenized and integrated into a decentralized finance and business operations ecosystem,” said Paul Brody, EY Global Blockchain Leader.