London Blockchain Conference VIP Media Dinner Highlights: Showcasing the real solution powered by blockchain

London Blockchain Conference VIP Media Dinner Highlights: Showcasing the real solution powered by blockchain


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Ahead of the debut of the London Blockchain Conference (LBC) at the QE II Center on 31 May – 2 June, local media were invited to a pre-LBC dining experience at Searcy’s at the Gherkin on 17 May.

The purpose of this invitation-only dinner was to showcase a real-world solution using blockchain technology. In this case, the solution was to capture the provenance, traceability and proof of quality of a menu ingredient on the blockchain via the Trace platform.

In partnership with IBM, Gate2Chain’s Trace solution and Michelin-star chef Ollie Dabbous’s bespoke menu were the stars of the evening, which was enjoyed by 100 guests including media, influencers and blockchain professionals.

The evening began with a star-studded networking champagne reception overlooking the London skyline before guests were ushered into the dining area. After being seated, Ayre Group and CoinGeek founder Calvin Ayre welcomed guests, highlighting how scalable blockchain technology has actual real-world utility, solving big data management and valuation challenges legally.

“What I like about what the team has done here is they’ve taken a very, very easy-to-understand application of this technology, and they’re not thrown a whole bunch of stuff, they get one and they’re immersed in it,” shared Ayre.

“They’ll actually be able to have it explained, how you’re going to be able to trace all the food that’s on the table from local sources, and you’ll be able to verify if the product came from a place that’s organic, if that fish was farmed,” he said.

“I’m excited about it because I think this is going to be the start of us really starting to educate the mainstream media,” Ayre noted.

Metro Tech Editor, BBC Travel Show presenter and London Blockchain Conference Business Stage host Lucy Hedges was in attendance, excited about blockchain’s role in transparency across many industries.

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“I think the one thing that blockchain really kicks in is transparency, and we want all the information, all the data about the product. It could be food, a watch, it could be a bag, it could be clothes, it could be so many things — art, wine — just the stranglehold of the information,” Hedges said.

“So it can be about authenticity, provenance, product handling, these kinds of things, all the important important bits of information that people need to know that the product they’re eating, using, wearing is genuine. People want to know the origin of that product, and that is where blockchain comes in,” she added.

Jessica Jaume, Operations and Business Development Manager at Gate2Chain, gave a brief speech at Trace and explained how the platform would tie into the meal guests were about to enjoy.

“Trace is a blockchain-powered platform that has been created in partnership with IBM and helps show authenticity, provenance, ownership and traceability and record events over time, so it’s like the certificate of authenticity and where certifications – all kinds of information – can be added and it’s aimed at the manufacturing industry,” she explained.

“Tonight we have showcased the use of this platform with tonight’s menu created by Oliver Dabbous, so people can see the traceability of the star ingredients,” said Jaume.

Dabbous’ special menu included royal jersey, wild garlic and virgin rapeseed oil focaccia, followed by a first course of steamed tulips with West London ricotta, Norfolk marigold and chilled pea broth, a second course of chalkstream trout with gooseberries, Why Valley asparagus and pine, a main course of pearl barley with flaked Goosnargh chicken, pickled courgette dishes and foie gras and topped with a strawberry tartlet, Devon whipped cream and spring flowers.

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When asked how blockchain technology plays a role in the quality of his ingredients in this special menu, to emphasize the importance of quality, Dabbous said that as a chef, you are only as good as the ingredients that enter your kitchen.

“You always want to get the best possible products from the best suppliers, and it’s one thing to say it, another thing to do it and also be able to prove it,” Dabbous pointed out.

“It’s the first time as a chef that I’ve been able to utilize any kind of abundant technology that can showcase the lineage of where you got it from and not only the traceability, but also doing that inherently shines a light on the supplier. And again , they work hard to make amazing ingredients. It’s a labor of love. So yeah, it’s a win-win,” he said.

Dr. Craig Wright, chief scientist of nChain and renowned food connoisseur, was delighted to see guests introduced to a platform that can help them identify the origins of Michelin-star ingredients and other goods. Dr. Wright often talks about Bitcoin’s role in supply chain management and tracking, the exact subject of his latest The Bitcoin Masterclasses, in fact.

“So this is part of what we’ve talked about with traceability. You will know every bit of what has been in the ingredient if you want. You know it came from India or China or Malaysia or somewhere in Africa or somewhere in Europe or England. You want that information available to know,” he said.

As well as introducing the media to a concrete use case for blockchain-powered technology, the event was also a taster of the upcoming London Blockchain Conference – an event that will delve much deeper into the utility of a scalable blockchain and what the future holds for it the technology.

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“The conference at the end of this month is going to be something very special,” revealed Stefan Matthews, co-founder and executive chairman of nChain Group.

“I’ve been involved in all the other conferences we’ve been to [the] before, but this one is bigger, more exciting than anything I’ve seen before. I have the privileged insider position of knowing some of the speeches that haven’t been announced yet, and of thinking about these people and knowing what kinds of presentations they’re going to give as keynotes; I can’t wait for Day 1. I really can’t wait for Day 1,” he said.

“And this event tonight, bringing this group together as a pro forma for the conference, just amazing,” Matthews added.

To join LBC, just register here online!

See: What is the London Blockchain Conference?

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