Scottish tech firm to launch online beer provenance

A world-first has been achieved by two companies that were brought together by Entrepreneurial Spark, the business accelerator and growth hub for entrepreneurs, it is revealed today

The duo were brought togather by Entrepreneurial Spark.  Picture: John Devlin
The duo were brought togather by Entrepreneurial Spark. Picture: John Devlin

Edinburgh-based tech firm Arc-net is teaming up with Ireland Craft Beers to create a new beer brand that will be placed on a blockchain platform – a digitalised “ledger” – to enable drinkers to trace the provenance of the ingredients online.

The Scottish business has marked and authenticated each bottle of the new brand, Downstream IPL, allowing full traceability of each bottle through the brewery and the supplier network to the ultimate consumer.

The two companies say customers will scan a QR smart code on the label of the bottle to be taken to “an online experience” that allows them to uniquely identify every single bottle produced.

Liam Brogan, co-founder and director of Ireland Craft Beers (ICB), says: “More than ever, consumers want to know where their food and drink comes from, so capturing and sharing production, process and product data with customers is central to having a brand that is trusted and respected. Consumers want transparency, they want authenticity, and blockchain enables that.”

Ireland Craft Beers has already secured a listing for the new beer in the Honest Brew online store, and the companies say a listing with an unnamed multi-national retailer with a strong UK presence will follow in the New Year.

Kieran Kelly, CEO of Arc-net, said: “The Arc-net platform provides Ireland Craft Beers with the opportunity to tell the story behind their brand.

“The new era of transparency on the blockchain helps to ensure the people and process behind the craft brewing process is made available. In a crowded market, products on the arc-net blockchain now have a voice.”

Kelly added that Arc-net was “delighted” to back the founders of ICB in their “vision to promote and protect the craft brewing process across the globe”.

ICB is a distributor of craft beers from the Republic of Ireland to various export markets.

It is working with Mourne Mountains Brewery to brew Downstream IPL.

Kelly founded Arc-net, and its eponymous Arc-net platform is a cloud based data analytics and supply-chain security platform for the food and drinks industry.