The blockchain solution for the craft beer ecosystem
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README.md

Brew Token

The Craft Beer Foundation

Abstract

The rules governing access to beer taps in pubs, clubs and other venues are broken.

Major brewers use supply contracts that include exclusivity provisions and volume requirements to lock out craft brewers. Some contracts require venues to dedicate over 80% of beer taps to their big name brands in exchange for rebates, infrastructure investment and refurbishment loans. And large foreign-owned multinational corporations market their own craft-like beers seeking to co-opt craft breweries authenticity and craftiness.

But craft beer drinkers "want to know who owns the beer they’re drinking" and "there is a strong preference for craft beer from independently owned breweries." [1] And craft beer enthusiasts don't want to be fooled into drinking a "fake version of a product" [2, 3] and there is "strong interest for a seal to identify (that) a beer is from an independent brewery." [1]

Craft breweries are losing revenue, venues aren't capturing consumers attention and craft beer enthusiasts feel increasingly misled.

The solution is a transparent and efficient Blockchain-based digital community. The first component is the Brew token and the second is the Brew platform that values and rewards users for their participation in the craft beer ecosytem.

Table of Contents

Value Proposition

To many, blockchain is a new concept but to others blockchain is an enabler helping them to build communities and to realise their belief in transparency, trust, and decentralisation.

We propose the Brew token as a means of exchange to be used by participants throughout the craft beer ecosystem.

The Brew platform will provide:

  • Craft Beer Enthusiasts: with the ability to learn where and how a craft beer was produced, to share their favourite craft beers, craft breweries, venues and events, and a share of tokens via the platform's recognition and reward system.
  • Craft Breweries: increased revenue, greater customer advocacy, analytics, and a share of tokens.
  • Venues and Events: increased customer attention, improved customer acquisition, and a share of tokens.

Introduction

The promise of the craft beer movement is an emphasis on quality, flavour and brewing technique.

And, in an efficient marketplace excellence should be rewarded. The best craft beer and the best craft breweries should receive the attention and funding they deserve.

This paper will review the current state of the craft beer marketplace and the predicament of craft breweries. It will outline a new solution that creates a transparent and efficient Blockchain-based community for craft beer enthusiasts, craft breweries, venues and events, accurately valuing and rewarding their participation in the craft beer ecosytem.

A Better Deal

To address the challenges faced by craft breweries requires a unit of exchange and a new platform. The first phase involves the introduction of the Brew token. The next phase involves the development and roll-out of the Brew platform.

The Brew Token

The Brew token (brewtoken.eth) is an ERC20 token [4] which will be traded on the Ethereum.

Ethereum is an open-source, public blockchain-based distributed computing platform and operating system, featuring smart contract functionality. [5] Smart contracts are stateful applications stored in the Ethereum blockchain. They are cryptographically secure and can verify or enforce performance of the contract.

Ethereum has been used for payment systems, registries of debts or promises, distributed exchanges and crowd funding. Big banks, tech giants, and other organisations have invested in and deployed Ethereum, including Accenture, Credit Suisse, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, JP Morgan and UBS. [6]

The decision to introduce a new token instead of simply using Ether is for socioeconomical, not technical, reasons. By creating a new token and making it the platform's only valid payment option, we engineer socioeconomic effects that we believe are significant enough to warrant the minor increase in complexity.

The supply is fixed at 1 × 10^8 tokens where each token has 1 × 10^18 non-divisible subunits (the same divisibility as Ether).

Note: Ethereum is planning future protocol upgrades to allow transaction fees to be paid by arbitrary mechanisms, including ERC20 tokens [7, 8]. This will remove most of the drawbacks of using a new token; there will be no difference in gas cost and users will only need to acquire Brew tokens.

Tokens for User Applications

Much of the development associated with the Brew DApp (Decentralised Application) is presently code complete.

We envisage that the Brew DApp will have significant value (without network effects [9]) for early adopters. As the number of users increases, the platform will become even more valuable and attract a wider user base. And, the rate of user adoption will increase as more users "hop on the bandwagon". [10]

The Brew platform's recognition and reward system will calculate a score based on a fixed threshold value (e.g., based on purchases at a craft brewery, venue or event) and a bounded score (e.g., based on recommendations). A summary of user behaviour will be recorded and payments made on the basis of scores.

Note: A fully distributed ledger is desirable, both for public accountability and to address any scalability concerns. We may be able to leverage a third-party open source Ethereum micropayments system or a combination of IPFS [11] and sidechains. [12]

Recommendations may be ranked or voted on using Brew tokens, similar to the “thumbsup/thumbsdown” on many commenting system implementations.

Comment votes backed by Brew tokens may be given more credibility due to the fact that someone cared enough to back the comment with what would be a limited supply of token, as well as the fact that a token transfer can be verified as coming from real people rather than robots.

Tokens for Craft Breweries, Venues and Events

The platform's recognition and reward system will calculate a score based on a fixed threshold value and a bounded score.

A lottery system may be used, where small payments are made probabilistically, with payments happening essentially in the same way that coin mining works with proof of participation instead of proof of work. [13]

Roadmap

  • Pre 1.0 Brew Platform: Complete development of the Brew DApp, the Recognition and Reward system and the Brew Ledger and Payments system.

  • 1.0 Brew Platform: Launch the Brew platform.

  • Beyond 1.0 Brew Platform: Brew wallet integrated with the Brew DApp.

The Australian Business Landscape

Competition

  • Untappd is a geosocial networking service and mobile phone application that allows its users to check into beers as they drink them, and share these check-ins and their locations with their friends. Untappd users can rate the beer they are consuming, earn badges, share pictures of their beers, review tap lists from nearby venues, see what beers their friends are drinking, and suggests similar beverages.
  • Now Tapped uses the Untappd API to provide real time tap list updates.
  • Beer Buddy is a mobile phone application that uses your device's camera to scan barcodes from beer bottles, cans, and cases, to obtain information pertaining to that particular beer.
  • The Happiest Hour website provides information about your local 'Happy Hour' deals, cheap drinks, food specials and Trivia Nights.
  • Clipp is a mobile phone application that provides mobile payments and last minute Bar & Restaurants deals.
  • Foursquare is a local search-and-discovery service that helps you find the perfect places (e.g., best food, nightlife, and entertainment) to go with friends.
  • Yelp publishes crowd-sourced reviews and recommendations about local businesses.

News and Information

Citations

[1] 2017 Australian Craft Beer Survey Results

[2] The Quest for Authenticity in Consumption

[3] Creating and retaining authenticity among craft breweries

[4] ERC20 Token Standard

[5] Ethereum

[6] Enterprise Ethereum Alliance

[7] On Abstraction

[8] Understanding Serenity, Part I: Abstraction

[9] Network effect

[10] Bandwagon effect

[11] IPFS is the Distributed Web

[12] Enabling Blockchain Innovations with Pegged Sidechains

[13] Micropayments for Decentralized Currencies