Using Blockchain Technology to Track Food and Beverage Ingredients

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, August 1, 2023 – The Canadian Agri-Food Automation and Intelligence Network (CAAIN) today unveiled the second of seven stories showcasing the AgTech research & innovation being developed by the recipients of funding made available through its 2021 Open Competition.

CAAIN’s mandate from Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada is to fund technological responses to the most significant opportunities and challenges facing the nation’s agri-food producers and processors. That means supporting promising efforts with the potential to provide economic or environmental value. The featured stories demonstrate that CAAIN is doing just that, as do the 129 collaborations the organization has nurtured and the $31M it is investing in 24 projects with a combined total value exceeding $100M.

“Food security means more than making sure everyone has enough to eat,” explained Darrell Petras, CAAIN’s newly appointed CEO. “It’s also about helping consumers to be confident they know what’s in the foods and beverages they purchase. Three weeks ago, we talked about a project that will mitigate the effects of livestock diseases—an important contribution to our health and safety. Today we’re discussing the value of accurate information, specifically technology that traces the source, and tracks the journey, of the ingredients brewers use to make the craft beers that are becoming so popular across the country. And what’s really cool—especially on a hot summer day—is that by scanning a QR code on the beverage’s label, we can read its story and know we’re getting what we paid for.”

Led by Prince Edward County, Ontario’s Grain Discovery, Field to Glass–The Next Generation of Barley Traceability has a total value of $1,611,524, of which $478,888 is being reimbursed by CAAIN. Some 30 craft breweries across the country are participating in a pilot project whose results to date have been very positive. What is particularly exciting about this application of blockchain technology is its relevance to other products. Canadians are becoming increasingly careful when choosing what they eat and drink. Grain Discovery’s research team believes beer to be the thin end of the wedge, and that once the kinks have been ironed out, their system will be applicable to any item on a grocery store shelf, allowing us to see for ourselves what’s in our cereal, bread, and ice cream, and where their ingredients were sourced. That is the kind of food security that will benefit us all.

For more information, read the story online.



The Canadian Agri-Food Automation and Intelligence Network (CAAIN) is a not-for-profit company launched in July 2019 with funding of $49.5‑million from the Government of Canada’s Strategic Innovation Fund, and assistance from Alberta Innovates in the form of significant in-kind contributions. CAAIN drives collaborative agri-food technology research and innovation from coast to coast by performing three core functions. First, it supports the development of promising solutions to important challenges facing producers and primary food processors. Second, it is building an online, member-based network connecting Canada’s agricultural and technology stakeholders. Third, CAAIN is developing a digital platform to link nationwide, production-specific networks of smart farms, which will collaborate to validate and demonstrate emerging technology in diverse locations across the country.   Twitter   LinkedIn


Project Funding Inquiries
Darrell Petras, P.Ag.
Canadian Agri-Food Automation and Intelligence Network
Media Inquiries
Eric Morin, CMP
Manager, Communications and Marketing
Canadian Agri-Food Automation and Intelligence Network
780.405.3742 |