Starbucks to test out bean-to-cup blockchain

The retailer has promised to open source a pilot programme and share what it learns

Starbucks is to implement Microsoft’s recently announced Azure Blockchain Service to track coffee production.

As reported by GeekWire, the idea is to connect coffee drinkers with coffee farmers, who can potentially then take advantage of new financial opportunities. 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. Starbucks has promised to open source the pilot programme and share what it learns.

Big on Bitcoin

By 2022, people will routinely use Bitcoin in everyday transactions such as buying coffee at Starbucks, according to venture capitalist Tim Draper.

In a recent podcast interview on NBC Bay Area’s “Sand Hill Road,” he said: “Bitcoin is one of the greatest technological advances that humanity has ever seen and it can make a bigger change in society than any of us ever imagined.”

He added: “I think when you go to Starbucks to buy a cup of coffee, and you try to pay with dollars, they will laugh at you because you are not using Bitcoin or other cryptocurrency…It will be like the old lady paying out with pennies.”

But if, as predicted by Draper, a single Bitcoin will be worth $250,000, how can it ever hope to cross over to the mainstream?

“Is that a problem?” he responded. “That’s a temporary problem. There is a market for Bitcoin right now. People are buying and selling it and they are buying and selling things and services with it. As it spreads, it will go up in value. And it is spreading.”

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