From the horse’s mouth
INSIDE Secure and Selinko are using NFC technology as part of a bottle-seal mechanism to determine whether that bottle of premium French wine or Scotch whisky was filled with the real drink rather than a cheaper poorer-quality substitute. This kind of bottle-refilling fraud has been affecting the supply of good-quality wine and spirits mainly in the Asian market in a manner similar to selling “knock-offs” of luxury bags, watches and similar items.
The technology is very similar to what FinnCode are doing with Giuletti Accordions to help with identifying the authenticity and provenance of the accordions that they make. This also works in tandem with an instrument registry that allows people buying any of these squeezeboxes second-hand to know whether have been stolen or not and if the instrument was used for a memorable gig or recording that someone claims it was used for,
The bottle seal works with an NFC chip that is deactivated when the bottle is opened or tampered with and works hand-in-glove with regular wine corks or bottle caps so that the look and experience isn’t lost. The NFC chip will work with NFC-capable smartphones, tablets and laptops to allow consumers, the licensed trade and others in the supply chain to identify if the bottle is still sealed and what is meant to be in the bottle.
I see this working beyond checking the authenticity and provenance of a particular wine or spirit to even checking the authenticity and provenance of other products sold in bottles or jars that are attractive to counterfeiters. Examples of these include soft-drinks such as the legendary Coca-Cola, spreads like the legendary Vegemite or even medicines that are still sold in bottle form.
Similarly, I see this also as a way to clamp down on drinks theft in other situations like hotel minibars or the home by being able to determine whether the bottle was opened and any drink was taken. This is even though one could replace the cork or cap or dilute the drink to make it look newly purchased.
It shows that NFC and QR-code technology provides a common method of creating a unique direct link to online data resources through a common smartphone or tablet as a way of “knowing more” about a product.