Eat, Drink And Play In The Metaverse | Latest News India

The Food & Beverage (F&B) sector in India is taking tentative steps toward joining the metaverse. Touted as the future of social media, the entry into metaverse is just not limited to issuing trademarks. Instead, the bigger picture involves bringing together the virtual and physical worlds, giving an immersive experience to the users.


Latest to join the metaverse bandwagon is Allied Blenders and Distillers (ABD) Ltd., an Indian domestic alcobev company. It announced the launch of its new whisky ICONiQ White, in ABD MetaBar – the organisation’s presence in the metaverse.

“The ABD MetaBar is an immersive virtual reality (VR) lounge in the Metaverse housing digital avatars of ABD’s leading brands. With its futuristic design, the ABD MetaBar is optimised for both mobile and desktop usage. It taps into the growing interest amongst consumers and enthusiasts for their desire to experiment and doodle on the future of human and virtual relationships,” said Bikram Basu, chief strategy and marketing officer, Allied Blenders and Distillers Ltd.

FORAY IN THE DIGITAL UNIVERSE

Globally, brands have launched attention-grabbing campaigns in the metaverse. For instance, tequila brand Jose Cuervo has opened a metaverse distillery located on the Decentraland platform. Beer company Heineken, launched Heineken Silver, the world’s first virtual beer at their virtual brewery in Decentraland. Liqueur brand Hpnotiq invited adults to venture into the metaverse with #HPNOVERSE. Hosted by Grammy-nominated musician Guapdad 4000, the AR world would be a place to discover drink recipes, get creative with an augmented reality camera app, and collect NFTS. Fast food chain Wendy’s opened Wendyverse, earlier this year. The Wendyverse comprises a virtual reality Wendy’s restaurant.


According to a report by MarketsandMarkets, the Metaverse market size is projected to grow from USD 61.8 billion in 2022 to USD 426.9 billion by 2027, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 47.2% during the forecast period.

Back home, Massive Restaurant’s Farzi Café and The Olive Group announced their foray into the metaverse. “Metaverse is the future of the F&B industry and we want to be at the top of it. Farzi Cafe being on the Metaverse is the most logical. Farzi Cafe serves modern Indian cuisine which is cutting edge and it has to be a step ahead in embracing technology. Currently, we are on board with OneRare to create Farzi Cafe in Metaverse. With this, we want to juxtapose the virtual world and the physical world. There is a lot to offer in the metaverse. For instance, at Farzi Cafe, users can play virtual games where they go and collect ingredients to create a dish. They can mint tokens and these can be exchanged at any of our physical restaurants across the country,” said Zorawar Kalra, founder, and managing director, Massive Restaurants. “Just like no restaurant can do without being on Instagram, similarly few years down the line, they cannot afford to be without being in the Metaverse.”


The Olive Group has collaborated with Hey Hey Global, an online platform powering experiential engagement between celebrities, influencers, and creators globally via new-age technology where fans can discover and buy creator-powered NFTs. The Olive Group will offer NFTs which will also include the group’s restaurants offering one-of-a-kind physical and virtual experiences to its guests. In the works are plans to engage with Olive’s wider community, via NFT and the Metaverse.

BUILDING A FOODVERSE

Supreet Raju, co-founder, OneRare, metaverse for Global Food & Beverage Industry said, “We are building world’s first ever foodverse. The idea is to create a more immersive experience for the foodies, as well as create a new marketing and monetisation platform for the F&B industry. Two significant things lead us to this. The first is the way social media has grown as a marketing tool for businesses. They want to interact more and more with the community and its desires and shared experiences, now. There is a growing need now to have stronger virtual connections. Secondly, this has been accelerated by the pandemic. The F&B industry suffered a lot in the two years. The idea has been to create this new Web3 platform, for the food industry. This allows them to create 3D experiences, issue their NFT, and create membership clubs. Have new ways of interacting with audiences, which isn’t a one-way connection or a 2D connection.”


The idea to build a foodverse is to take the F&B industry to Web3. The aim is not the replacement of real life, because it’s food and drinks and one needs a taste to enjoy it. “What we are seeking to do is, improve the virtual experience. So, let’s say right now, you are craving a burger. You go on Google and check out places, or go on a food aggregator website or an app, make a choice, and then use a banking app to pay for it. You will even put up your reviews online. There is a lot of time that is spent on apps through this entire process of discovering these new places. That’s what we are looking to do. The idea is to handhold them, and get them to understand the power of blockchain and what it can do for their business.” She added, “ Also, the idea is to also have people in their digital avatars, in Web3, come to the foodverse and spend some time, earn an NFT, to come back to real world and swap for a real food item. So let’s say, you come into the foodverse and play a game. You’ve won a burger NFT. You can take that to any of our partner restaurants and swap it for a real burger as well.”


The author tweets @Namyasinha


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