The following piece is from our sister publication, Germination.
Ontario’s Grain Discovery and Alberta’s Blindman Brewing are launching the first fully-commercialized traceability system for beer, starting with their new May Long Double IPA which will be released in time for the May long weekend.
The pair have built an end-to-end digital system to trace Canadian grown malt barley through every stage of the value chain, from the field to your glass. The May Long Double IPA will be the first beer from the Blindman product line to migrate to the Grain Discovery platform, providing a QR code for customers to scan, enter their lot number and view every step of the production process in incredible and engaging detail.
“The craft beer industry is moving towards the development of terroir and provenance, much like today’s wineries,” said Kirk Zembal, co-founder of Blindman Brewing based in Lacombe. “It’s one thing to tell an origin story, but starting today, we will be the first brewery offering beer drinkers verified traceability in one hand for the pint they’re holding in the other.”
This project will deliver significant impact beyond transparency for the customer, the companies said. It will simplify manual based time-consuming processes, connect data silos, add value to certified seed, create a feedback loop back to the plant breeder, and ultimately enable the Canadian barley industry to create global brand recognition, they added.
“Malt barley is the ideal market to adopt this technology as premium ingredients and a transparent origin story is part of the ethos of craft breweries,” said Rory O’Sullivan, CEO of Grain Discovery. “What makes me even more excited is knowing this is just the first step towards commercial blockchain application of this technology to the broader beer industry.”
He noted this project was made possible with participation from all members of the value chain, including Rahr Malting, Red Shed Malting, Gambrinus Malting and their farmers. All stakeholders were onboarded onto the Grain Discovery system to input relevant data from agricultural inputs to information about quality.