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Patent Searching and Data


Title:
CONTAINER TRACKING
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/243848
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Aspects of the invention provide a method of uniquely tracking an identified container in a deposit return scheme for recyclable containers. The method comprises, at a verification exchange: retrieving a unique code applied to a container; by a blockchain node at the verification exchange, recording the unique code and a value associated with the container in a creation record on a first blockchain network including enrolling the creation record with at least two peer nodes; receiving a message from a container scanning module including a scanned code and a wallet identifier which uniquely identifies a digital wallet; comparing the scanned code to a creation record on the first blockchain network to obtain a matched creation record; registering a processing record on the first blockchain network and associating the processing record with the matched creation record; and, assigning the value in the creation record to the digital wallet identified by the wallet identifier. A system and computer readable medium are also provided.

Inventors:
MCGURK ANTHONY (GB)
MIDWOOD DUNCAN (GB)
Application Number:
PCT/GB2019/051770
Publication Date:
December 26, 2019
Filing Date:
June 21, 2019
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
CRYPTOCYCLE LTD (GB)
International Classes:
G06Q10/00; G06Q20/36; G06Q30/02; G07F7/06
Domestic Patent References:
WO2018099549A12018-06-07
Foreign References:
US20170178125A12017-06-22
US20060069588A12006-03-30
US20170178125A12017-06-22
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
GILL JENNINGS & EVERY LLP (GB)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A method of uniquely tracking an identified asset in a deposit return scheme for recyclable assets, the method comprising, at a verification exchange: retrieving a unique code applied to an asset;

by a blockchain node at the verification exchange, recording the unique code and a value associated with the asset in a creation record on a first blockchain network including enrolling the creation record with at least two peer nodes;

receiving a message from an asset scanning module including a scanned code and a wallet identifier which uniquely identifies a digital wallet;

comparing the scanned code to a creation record on the first blockchain network to obtain a matched creation record;

registering a processing record on the first blockchain network and associating the processing record with the matched creation record; and,

assigning the value in the creation record to the digital wallet identified by the wallet identifier.

2. A method according to claim 1 , wherein the associating the processing record with the matched creation record further comprises creating a blockchain transaction, including the processing record and the matched creation record.

3. A method according to claim 1 or 2, wherein the first blockchain network comprises multiple ledgers and wherein the method further comprises:

retrieving a block identifier,

wherein the creation record is recorded on a ledger of the blockchain network based on the block identifier such that the creation record is recorded on a ledger associated with a manufacturer of the asset.

4. A method according to claim 3, wherein the block identifier is a manufacturer identifier.

5. A method according to claim 2, further comprising recording each transaction in a separate transactional database.

6. A method according to any preceding claim, wherein the step of recording the unique code and a value associated with the asset in a creation record on a first blockchain network, comprises recording each creation record in a first record of a new block of the blockchain network, wherein any subsequent records associated with the creation record are appended to the same block.

7. A method according to any preceding claim, wherein the method further comprises:

registering an additional transaction on a ledger of a second, different blockchain network,

wherein the digital wallet is associated with the second blockchain network and assigning the value in the creation record to the digital wallet comprises transferring the value associated with the assest in the first blockchain network to the digital wallet in the second blockchain network.

8. A method according to any preceding claim, wherein retrieving the unique code further comprises scanning a unique code applied to an asset by an asset manufacturing module.

9. A method according to any preceding claim, further comprising:

at the verification exchange, receiving a set of asset data and appending the set of asset data to the creation record, wherein the asset data is indicative of information associated with the asset.

10. A method according to any preceding claim, further comprising:

at the verification exchange, appending a cryptographic key to the creation record;

recording a set of asset data in a database; and,

allowing access to the set of asset data based on the cryptographic key, wherein the asset data is indicative of information associated with the asset.

11. A method according to claim 9 or 10 wherein the set of asset data is selected from a group comprising: type of asset, manufacturer, asset contents, value associated with security, rules that apply to the asset, restrictions that apply to the asset and an amount of Polyethyleneterephthalate contained in the asset.

12. A method according to any of claims 9 to 11 , further comprising:

at the verification exchange, retrieving a part of the set of asset data based on the matched creation record and sending the part of the set of asset data to the asset scanning module.

13. A method according to any preceding claim, wherein the unique code is a unique random code.

14. A method according to any preceding claim, wherein the asset scanning module is included within a reverse vending machine.

15. A method according to any preceding claim, wherein the asset is a container and the asset scanning module is container scanning module.

16. A computer readable medium comprising instructions which, when executed by a processor, cause the processor to perform the method of any of claims 1 to 15.

17. A system for uniquely tracking an identified asset in a deposit return scheme for recyclable assets, the system comprising:

a first blockchain network including a plurality of peer nodes each containing a part of a blockchain;

an electronic device storing digital information relating to a digital wallet; and,

an asset scanning module configured to scan a code applied to an asset, retrieve a digital wallet identifier; and, send a message to the verification exchange computing system including the scanned code and the digital wallet identifier; and,

a verification exchange computing system, the verification exchange computing system configured to: retrieve a unique code applied to an asset;

record the unique code and a value associated with the asset in a creation record on the first blockchain network including enrolling the creation record with at least two peer nodes;

receive a message from the asset scanning module including a scanned code and a wallet identifier which uniquely identifies the digital wallet;

compare the scanned code to a creation record on the first blockchain network to obtain a matched creation record;

register a processing record on the first blockchain network and associate the processing record with the matched creation record; and, assign the value in the creation record to the digital wallet identified by the wallet identifier.

18. A system according to claim 17, wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to create a blockchain transaction on the blockchain network including the processing record and the matched creation record.

19. A system according to claim 17 or 18, wherein the first blockchain network comprises multiple ledgers and wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to: retrieve a block identifier, and record the creation record on a ledger of the blockchain network based on the block identifier such that the creation record is recorded on a ledger associated with a manufacturer of the asset.

20. A system according to claim 19, wherein the block identifier is a manufacturer identifier.

21. A system according to claim 18, wherein the system further comprises a transactional database configured to store a record of the blockchain transactions, and wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to record each transaction in a separate transactional database.

22. A system according to any of claims 17 to 21 , wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to record each creation record in a first record of a new block of the blockchain network, wherein any subsequent records associated with the creation record are appended to the same block.

23. A system according to any of claims 17 to 22, further comprising a second, different blockchain network including a plurality of peer nodes each containing a part of a second different blockchain, wherein the verification exchange computing system is configured to register an additional transaction on a ledger of a second, different blockchain network, wherein the digital wallet is associated with the second blockchain network and the verification exchange computing system is configured to transfer the value associated with the asset in the first blockchain network to the digital wallet in the second blockchain network.

24. A system according to any of claims 17 to 23, further comprising a asset manufacturing network configured to send a message to the verification exchange computing system including the unique identifier.

25. A system according to any of claims 17 to 24, further comprising an asset manufacturing network configured send a message to the verification exchange computing system including a set of asset data, wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to append the asset data to the creation record, wherein the asset data is indicative of information associated with the asset.

26. A system according to any of claims 17 to 25, further comprising further comprising an asset manufacturing network configured send a message to the verification exchange computing system including a set of asset data, wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to append a cryptographic key to the creation record, record a set of asset data in a database; and, allow access to the set of asset data based on the cryptographic key, wherein the asset data is indicative of information associated with the asset.

27. A system according to claim 25 or 26, wherein the set of asset data is selected from a group comprising: type of asset, manufacturer, asset contents, value associated with security, rules that apply to the asset, restrictions that apply to the asset and an amount of Polyethyleneterephthalate contained in the asset.

28. A system according to any of claims 25 to 27, wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to retrieve a part of the set of asset data based on the matched creation record and sending the part of the set of asset data to the asset scanning module.

29. A system according to any of claims 17 to 28, wherein the unique code is a unique random code.

30. A system according to any of claims 17 to 29, further comprising a reverse vending machine including the asset scanning module.

31. A system according to any of claims 17 to 30, wherein the asset is a container and the asset scanning module is a container scanning module.

Description:
CONTAINER TRACKING

BACKGROUND Plastic is ubiquitous, insidious and impossible to avoid. It makes up our clothes, containers bottles, electronics, food trays, cups and paints. Although it's been known for years that some of the additives used to make plastic are dangerous, few have been tested on humans. Many governments around the world including the UK have plans to increase the recycling of containers through the use of a DRS (Deposit Return Scheme) or container-deposit legislation. In a DRS consumers pay a small deposit on every container at the point of sale which is refunded when the container is returned. Due to the wide variety of containers and suppliers in the marketplace, the identification and return of the value to consumers raises significant and problematic issues, not least:

· the tracking and transfer of individual container value;

• apportioning payment; and,

• the opportunities for fraudulent processing.

Fraudulent processing is particularly prevalent in recycling schemes implemented throughout the world. A typical reverse vending machine process, for example, provides a recycler with a cash amount or voucher in exchange for providing a container. Such systems are easily compromised. In one known deception a container is cut in two so that the automated system recognises multiple containers.

Some reverse vending machines shred the bottle after it has entered the machine. By disabling the shredding mechanism fraudsters can claim back deposits for the same bottles over and over again. Additionally, since retailers are obliged to pay back deposits even for non-reusable bottles they do not sell, a clearing system is meant to compensate shops for any potential losses. Criminals could exploit this system by claiming back deposits for bottles they did not receive in the first place. Due to the vast daily data streams involved, such criminal activity would be difficult to detect. Similarly, containers could be recycled on multiple occasions. According to A.G. Barr pic. On a small scale we could see people scavenging in bins for containers, as is the US experience. On a medium scale there is potential for local authority amenity centre looting. And on a larger scale there is the very real possibility of cross-border trafficking of deposit-bearing containers.”

Manual processes that lessen fraud risks by requiring retailers to confirm a container is present or scan a bottle are unsatisfactory. The retailer must assign a payment to the container and reconcile the payment with a deposit provider. Such retailer involvement also requires complex operating structures and technology requirements at the retailer, which are expensive. Further, current systems require significant auditing which is technically problematic.

The currently proposed deposit schemes involve scanning the bottle or a barcode on the bottle or alternatively require manual entry of the bottle recycled into a connected system. It can become technically difficult in such systems to apportion payment. For example, when a bottle is recycled in a vending machine it is impossible to determine who sold that container (which is relevant depending on how the deposit is levied). Utilising barcodes for deposit return also introduces opportunities for fraud for example where counterfeit labels may be used.

To encourage the public to recycle, it has been previously been proposed to utilise a cryptocurrency system to reward recyclers. An initial coin offering is made for a particular coin or type of cryptocurrency. A consumer takes a plastic bottle to a central recycling point and in return for recycling the bottle the recycling point provides the customer with a token reward in the cryptocurrency. That token can be exchanged for a voucher for a store or other cryptocurrency. The central recycling point then sells the received products to return a profit. Such technical systems are incompatible with deposit return schemes and so not address the technical problems described above (the tracking and transfer of individual container value; apportioning payment; and, the opportunities for fraudulent processing) but are rather aimed at incentivising recycling. Further, this approach is constrained and complicated as a cryptocoin approach is open to speculation and value fluctuation. A digital currency is used just like traditional bill-and-coin currency and is considered a commodity, just like silver or gold. This means it is just as vulnerable to market fluctuations as any other commodity or stock would be. This instability is not ideal when trying to drive recycling habits where there is a fixed value levied.

US2017/0178125 describes a cryptocurrency system.

Once a bottle has been returned or recycled and a payment is presented to the recycler, bottles are typically collected centrally and manually sorted in order to properly recycle the container. To recycle a bottle made of polyethylene terephthalate (PET), the bottles are manually sorted based on the PET content in the bottle, typically indicated with a resin identification code. Deposit return schemes and known technical systems are unable to differentiate between containers having different PET content which forces costly manual sorting, misses opportunities for recycling based on container type, and further prevents schemes from offering different deposits based on eventual recycle value. It would be beneficial to provide a technical solution to eliminate manual processing.

There exists therefore a need to effectively track identified containers in a deposit return scheme for recyclable containers, which is able to track and transfer individual container value, apportion payment, and obviate the opportunities for fraudulent processing.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

According to the present invention there is provided a method of uniquely tracking an identified asset in a deposit return scheme for recyclable assets, the method comprising, at a verification exchange: retrieving a unique code applied to an asset; by a blockchain node at the verification exchange, recording the unique code and a value associated with the asset in a creation record on a blockchain including enrolling the creation record with at least two peer nodes; receiving a message from a asset scanning module including a scanned code and a wallet identifier which uniquely identifies a digital wallet; comparing the scanned code to a creation record on the blockchain to obtain a matched creation record; registering a processing record on the blockchain and associating the processing record with the matched creation record; and, assigning the value in the creation record to the digital wallet identified by the wallet identifier.

The system creates an immutable record of the transfer of value from the manufacturer of an asset to the consumer. The asset may be a container such as a beverage container or other asset such as a nappy or diaper. The system does not utilise a cryptocurrency transaction to effect this transfer but rather assigns a value to a smart contract. The system prevents fraudulent processing by uniquely linking the value of the asset to the individual asset itself by assigning a unique code to that asset. Once it is recorded that the asset has been recycled the value is assigned to a digital wallet so that the value is permanently and securely assigned.

The record of the recycling is visible, traceable and anonymous and complies with all data protection regulations. The tracking of assets with an associated value enables full audit of the container without exposing the system to fraud. By implementing a state transition mechanism for the system rather than a cryptocurrency implementation, the state of the asset will be permanently recorded.

The terms asset and container may be used interchangeably. For example, the asset scanning module may be a container scanning module.

Preferably, the associating the processing record with the matched creation record further comprises creating a blockchain transaction, including the processing record and the matched creation record. Thus the transaction is an immutable record of the recycling of the container and can only be performed once. The value of the container effectively expires. In certain embodiments, the first blockchain network comprises multiple ledgers and the method further comprises: retrieving a block identifier, wherein the creation record is recorded on a ledger of the blockchain network based on the block identifier such that the creation record is recorded on a ledger associated with a manufacturer of the asset. This provides anonymity to each manufacturer and also provides security in relation to each company’s sensitive production data.

In a multi-stakeholder environment this approach provides greater transparency. The use of multiple blockchains to provide a larger dataset allows for increased transactional throughput when compared to other blockchain implementations.

Preferably the block identifier is a manufacturer identifier. Alternatively, the block identifier may be a cryptographic certificate.

Each transaction may be recorded in a separate transactional database to facilitate auditing and tracking.

The step of recording the unique code and a value associated with the asset in a creation record on a first blockchain network may comprise recording each creation record in a first record of a new block of the blockchain network, wherein any subsequent records associated with the creation record are appended to the same block. This allows the system to construct shorter processing chains and therefore increase the performance of the system.

In certain embodiments, the method may further comprise: registering an additional transaction on a ledger of a second, different blockchain network, wherein the digital wallet is associated with the second blockchain network and assigning the value in the creation record to the digital wallet comprises transferring the value associated with the asset in the first blockchain network to the digital wallet in the second blockchain network. Thus the manufacturer data is separated from the data available to consumers for security and privacy. Retrieving the unique code may further comprise scanning a unique code applied to an asset by an asset manufacturing module (or container manufacturing module). Thus at the point of the application the unique code applied to the container can be determined and an accurate creation record created.

At the verification exchange, the method may also comprise receiving a set of asset data and appending the set of asset data to the creation record. Alternatively or additionally, the method may comprise, at the verification exchange, appending a cryptographic key to the creation record; recording a set of asset data in a database; and, allowing access to the set of asset data based on the cryptographic key, wherein the asset data is indicative of information associated with the asset. The set of container data may be selected from a group comprising: type of asset, manufacturer, asset or container contents, value associated with security, rules that apply to the asset, restrictions that apply to the asset and an amount of Polyethyleneterephthalate (PET) contained in the asset or container. Accordingly, manufacturers and operators of the system can associate the recyclable container and track the containers through the system. In this way insights into user behaviour and product lifecycle can be achieved in real time. Costs of PET can be reduced as supply can be optimised.

Preferably, the method may further comprise in these embodiments, at the verification exchange, retrieving a part of the set of asset data based on the matched creation record and sending the part of the set of asset data to the container scanning module. This enables the container scanning modules such as reverse vending machines or retailers to facilitate sorting of the containers based on criteria to reduce recycling costs. The present solution can identity the container together with its type and make up and provide this information to a recycling centre.

The unique code may be a unique random code to facilitate anonymization and privacy. The asset scanning module may be included within a reverse vending machine. In this way the consumers can easily derive and return value from their recycling activities.

According to a further aspect of the invention there is provided a computer readable medium comprising instructions which, when executed by a processor, cause the processor to perform the method of the above aspects of the invention.

According to a further aspect of the invention there is provided a system for uniquely tracking an identified asset in a deposit return scheme for recyclable assets, the system comprising: a first blockchain network including a plurality of peer nodes each containing a part of a blockchain; an electronic device storing digital information relating to a digital wallet; and, a container scanning module configured to scan a code applied to an asset, retrieve a digital wallet identifier; and, send a message to the verification exchange computing system including the scanned code and the digital wallet identifier; and, a verification exchange computing system, the verification exchange computing system configured to: retrieve a unique code applied to an asset; record the unique code and a value associated with the asset in a creation record on the first blockchain network including enrolling the creation record with at least two peer nodes; receive a message from the asset scanning module including a scanned code and a wallet identifier which uniquely identifies the digital wallet; compare the scanned code to a creation record on the first blockchain network to obtain a matched creation record; register a processing record on the first blockchain network and associate the processing record with the matched creation record; and, assign the value in the creation record to the digital wallet identified by the wallet identifier.

The verification exchange computing system may be further configured to create a blockchain transaction on the blockchain network including the processing record and the matched creation record. The system further comprises a transactional database configured to store a record of the blockchain transactions, and wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to record each transaction in a separate transactional database.

The first blockchain network may comprise multiple ledgers and wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to: retrieve a block identifier, and record the creation record on a ledger of the blockchain network based on the block identifier such that the creation record is recorded on a ledger associated with a manufacturer of the asset. The block identifier is a manufacturer identifier.

The verification exchange computing system may be further configured to record each creation record in a first record of a new block of the blockchain network, wherein any subsequent records associated with the creation record are appended to the same block.

A second, different blockchain network may be provided including a plurality of peer nodes each containing a part of a second different blockchain, wherein the verification exchange computing system is configured to register an additional transaction on a ledger of a second, different blockchain network, wherein the digital wallet is associated with the second blockchain network and the verification exchange computing system is configured to transfer the value associated with the asset in the first blockchain network to the digital wallet in the second blockchain network.

The system may further comprise an asset manufacturing network configured to send a message to the verification exchange computing system including the unique identifier.

The system may further comprise an asset manufacturing network configured send a message to the verification exchange computing system including a set of asset data, wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to append the asset data to the creation record, wherein the asset data is indicative of information associated with the asset. The system may further comprise an asset manufacturing network configured send a message to the verification exchange computing system including a set of asset data, wherein the verification exchange computing system is further configured to append a cryptographic key to the creation record, record a set of asset data in a database; and, allow access to the set of asset data based on the cryptographic key, wherein the asset data is indicative of information associated with the asset. The set of asset data may be selected from a group comprising: type of asset, manufacturer, asset contents, value associated with security, rules that apply to the asset, restrictions that apply to the asset and an amount of Polyethyleneterephthalate contained in the asset or container.

The verification exchange computing system may be further configured to retrieve a part of the set of asset data based on the matched creation record and sending the part of the set of asset data to the asset scanning module. The unique code is a unique random code. The system may further comprise a reverse vending machine including the asset scanning module.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Examples of systems and methods in accordance with the invention will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:-

Figure 1 shows a high-level flow diagram of a system for tracking recyclable containers;

Figure 2 shows a schematic overview of an ecosystem for tracking recyclable containers;

Figure 3 shows a flow diagram of the recording of a container’s creation on a blockchain network;

Figure 4 illustrates a schematic overview of a recycling exchange for facilitating container tracking;

Figure 5 illustrates a flow diagram of processing of a container as it is recycled; Figure 6 illustrates a flow diagram of the association of a digital wallet with a container value; and,

Figure 7 illustrates an overview of a further example system of tracking recyclable containers. The present invention provides a way to uniquely track identified containers in a deposit return scheme for recyclable containers. The invention uses a distributed blockchain ledger in a unique manner to transfer value of a container from a manufacturer to a consumer.

Blockchain technology is a relatively new technology that has been used in digital currency implementations. An example implementation and corresponding blockchain techniques are described in a 2008 article by Satoshi Nakamoto, called“Bitcoin: peer-to-peer electronic cash system”. A blockchain is a data structure which stores data and can be thought of as a distributed ledger or distributed database which records transactions between the source identifier(s) and destination identifier(s). Transactions are bundled into blocks, with every block referring back to or being linked to a prior block in the chain (blockchain). Computer nodes maintain the blockchain and cryptographically validate each new block and thus the transactions contained in the corresponding block. The integrity that the previously recorded transaction has not been modified is maintained because each block refers to or includes a cryptographic hash value of the prior block and any modification to the data will alter this value and flag that the data in the block has been tampered with. Every additional block added increases the difficulty of tampering with the content of an earlier block. Therefore, even though the contents of a blockchain may be available for all to see, they become practically immutable.

The identifiers used for blockchain transactions are created through cryptography, such as for example, public key cryptography. A user may create a destination identifier using a private key. This relationship between the private key and the destination identifier are made to be used to provide“proof that the user is associated with the created transaction. The user can now create another transaction to transfer the value and contents of the prior transaction. As the relationship between the identifier and the corresponding private key is only known by the user, the user has some allowance of anonymity as they can create many different destination identifiers (which are through the private key). Therefore, a user’s total association with multiple transactions included in the blockchain may be hidden from other users. While the details of a transaction may be publically available on the distributed ledger, the underlying participants to those transactions may be hidden because the identifiers are linked via the keys known only to the corresponding participants.

In summary, the blockchain is a data structure stored on a distributed computer system (a distributed blockchain computer system) and includes multiple“nodes” (e.g. individual computers or processing cores). Each one of the nodes in the blockchain computer system may store a copy, or a portion thereof of the blockchain. The blockchain is made up of a list of transactions (or blocks of transactions) that are linked together.

The concepts described herein disclose a computer system which communicates with a distributed blockchain including multiple computing nodes for creating, facilitating and storing encrypted transactions securely in a deposit returns recycling scheme. A unique random code is registered on a block, together with a value associated with a recycling container. The block becomes an immutable record that removes any possibility of fraud from the supply and recycling chain. When a consumer disposes of the container at a recyclable point, the unique random code is read and validated against the block and a deposit value is‘released’. A one-time transaction allows the transfer of the value back to the consumer via a digital wallet application or printed as a unique voucher at the recycle point. The subsequent voucher could be presented to a retailer and cash refunded via a specific retailer electronic wallet. A recycling record will allow the automatic sorting of containers by type/grade and reduce the recycling overhead and also provide immutable evidence regarding the amount of reprocessing undertaken should such information be stored with the value of the container on the block.

A digital wallet is effectively a digital store of public and private keys which can be used to receive or spend a value. With the private key, it is possible to write in the ledger, effectively transferring the associated value. Downloading a wallet from a wallet provider to a computer or phone does not automatically mean that the owner is the only one who has a copy of the private keys. To access the value in the blockchain, the private key stored in the wallet must match the public address the value is assigned to. The transaction is signified by a transaction record on the blockchain. Available digital wallets include for example hardware wallets, software wallets, mobile wallets and online wallets as is known in the art.

Figure 1 illustrates a high level schematic overview 100 of a system proposed. As shown in Figure 1 , containers are coded through a creation of a unique identifier (specifically a unique random code) which is applied to the plastic container (step S101 ).

Throughout the present description, the term bottle and plastic container may be used interchangeably. As will be understood, the concepts are equally applicable to any recyclable asset such as a bottle or can but we refer primarily to recyclable containers for simplicity and to reflect that the technical challenges addressed by the invention would be equally applicable to any recyclable container or material. Recyclable material includes for example plastic, metal (aluminium, steel), glass, card, composite, etc.

The container once filled (step S102) is passed to a retailer (step S103) and sold to a consumer in the usual way (step S104).

A levy may be placed on each container unit by the operator of the deposit return scheme and paid by the manufacturer. The levy is paid to the manufacturer by the retailer and paid through the supply chain.

Prior to sale, the code attached to the container is encrypted and registered on a block of a blockchain (step S105) together with a value attributable to the container. Rather than recording a transaction between the manufacturer and the retailer on the block, the record on the block of the blockchain records the creation of the container and a value associated with it. All information is encrypted using public key encryption and stored as an immutable record on a distributed ledger (blockchain). Public Key encryption may be used to encode the blockchain between all the trusted parties in the scheme. The key generation may optionally utilise various methodologies, such as Shamir's Secret Sharing as described by Adi Shamir, or adaptive secret sharing.

After use, the consumer takes the container to a recycling point where the identifier applied to the container is read (step S106). The container is then taken from the consumer for recycling (step S107).

After the identifier is read, the identifier is compared to the ledger on the blockchain, the creation record identified and the container identifier verified (step S108). The value associated with the container in the creation record on the blockchain is transferred from the manufacturer identifier to a digital wallet identifier (step S109) and a processing record added to the blockchain. Preferably, the addition of a processing record to the block of the blockchain completes a blockchain transaction. Thus, when the container is disposed of, the unique identifier is read and validated and effectively expires.

If the consumer has signed up to the system, the digital wallet may be the digital wallet of the consumer (step S1 10). If the consumer has not signed up the system, the digital wallet may be of the recycling point and the consumer given a redeemable voucher or cash from the recycling point (step S1 1 1).

Figure 2 illustrates a high level overview schematic of an eco-system for implementing the concepts described. Each of the elements will be described in detail below.

A container production subsystem 201 will be provided at the manufacturer. The container production subsystem serves to apply a unique code to the recyclable containers. A manufacturing management system 202 may be provided which is operable to process the codes and pass a deposit message to a recycling exchange 203. The recycling exchange 203 is the central processing unit of the ecosystem. The recycling exchange 203 serves to process the messages received from the manufacturing management system and record transactions on the blockchain 204 via a message bus 205. As alluded to above, the blockchain 204 may be considered a distributed blockchain ledger stored amongst a plurality of peers of nodes.

Although the schematic illustrates a single recycling exchange platform 203 hosted on one or more servers, in practice multiple recycling exchanges may be provided to interface with the blockchain as is well known in the art. The recycling exchange may be considered a cloud-based platform for interaction with the other modules of the ecosystem via the internet.

An accounting system 210 may be provided to store information generated by the system, including the number of containers, containers recycled, values transferred, amounts and types of plastic, transaction counts, audit figures related to each consumer, and reverse vending machine or retailer performance, etc.

A deposit settlement module 21 1 may be provided which controls the settlement of any value transfers between a blockchain and the consumer/retailer, for example the transfer of crypto values.

An ISO Gateway 209 may also be provided which manages the transfer of cash values from the digital crypto world to the physical world by way of electronic cash transfer, should the consumer or retailer request it.

The ecosystem includes a plurality of digital wallets 206, each installed on a device, which enable users to access the blockchain network 204 to facilitate transactions. The terms digital wallet, virtual wallet and cryptographic wallet may be used interchangeably throughout the present application.

Optionally, a reverse vending machine network 207 or a retailer network 208 may be provided to acknowledge receipt of the recyclable container and update the recycling exchange 203 that the container has been processed. Figure 3 illustrates a schematic flow 300 of how a unique container identifier may be validated and recorded on a distributed ledger.

At a container production computer system 201 , a unique random code (URC) may be generated and attached to the container. The unique code may for example be attached to the label of the container or indelibly marked on the container using known manufacturing techniques. In a typical manufacturing process, unique codes are currently applied to the container for food security processes and often indicate the origin or manufacturing time of the contents of the container. In one example, it is proposed to utilise this already attached unique code and, optionally, separately encode this code to create a unique code for the purposes of the distributed ledger system.

Alternatively, a unique coding system may be used and encoded. Any number of coding systems are considered and may be created in a variety of ways as would be understood by the skilled person. For example, the code may be split into a header and payload with the header incorporating metadata relating to the originator of the code, the taxing or levy authority, or the country of origin or the country in which the scheme is operated. The application of the code to the bottle must be sufficient for the code to be read, or otherwise scanned, by a reverse vending machine or retailer but any number of application techniques are considered.

The URC applied to the container may be scanned after application or otherwise passed to a manufacturing management system 202. At the manufacturing management system, the URC is verified. The manufacturing management system 202 may not receive the URCs added to the containers but may be aware of the URCs added to the containers through other communication with subsystems of the manufacturer.

The manufacturing management system may send a deposit message to the recycling exchange 203. The deposit message includes the identifier of the container and a notional value associated with the container. The deposit message may also include various production details including manufacturer, container type and information regarding suitability for recycling.

The data from the manufacturing management system 202 may be passed to recycling exchange on an individual message basis or may be batch processed. In the batch processing example, a batch is submitted to the recycling exchange that includes information regarding containers that have been processed for sale together with a value attributed to those containers.

At the recycling exchange 203, the contents of each of the messages received is passed, validated and recorded on a blockchain 204 (communications between the exchange and the blockchain may be made through a messaging bus 205). Thus the present techniques can be utilised to create or virtualise any recycling value or partner value that has ownership and can be stored on the blockchain.

Thus, when a registered entity creates a new value, the value and associated data are stored directly on the blockchain ledger and are represented as one or more entries (or“blocks”) on the blockchain. The recycling exchange utilises a one-way hashing algorithm to append one or more blocks to the distributed blockchain ledger containing the record of the URC and associated value.

In certain examples, a creation record is the first record in a new block (ground zero). All other records are appended to the creation block. For example, Block A“Cola January Company 1”, Block B“Cola February Company AT’. Block A would be the creation block containing all the codes written to the blockchain for cola produced in January by company 1 and Block B will contain the codes for February. This will allow the system to construct shorter processing chains and therefore increase the performance of the system.

As alluded to above, the blockchain network 204 includes multiple computing nodes, where the computing nodes are configured to store a copy, or a portion thereof, of a blockchain and where the blockchain itself includes one or more ledgers. Preferably the blockchain is a private, permission-based blockchain (also known as a hybrid blockchain). Such a blockchain is available only to registered users of the platform such as those who have downloaded cryptographic wallets, or registered manufacturers.

When the recycling exchange 203 creates a transaction on the blockchain, the blockchain may be appended with an entry that includes a dataset of information associated with the containers. An exemplary dataset may include data that identifies the type of container, the manufacturer, the value associated with the security, rules that apply to the container, restrictions that apply to the container (e.g., amount of PET “Polyethyleneterephthalate” contained, etc.), documentation, and other related information.

Optionally, the dataset may be stored on the blockchain. Alternatively, some or all of the data associated with the container may be recorded on a server, and the entry in the blockchain corresponding to the transaction may include a cryptographic key or cypher that enables the data to be unlocked and retrieved.

Figure 4 illustrates in detail modules of an exemplary recycling exchange 203. The recycling exchange 203 may be configured to validate received information and maintain a database of containers submitted.

As illustrated in Figure 4, the recycling exchange 203 may include a manufacturer management system 401 for verifying transactions and managing a ledger, an account manager module 402 for managing accounts with the system, a verification engine 403 for facilitating verification of the records on the blockchain and a reverse recycling system 404 for facilitating the transfer of value and interaction with a reverse vending system or retailer system. Reverse vending systems are well known in the art. As indicated above, the recycling exchange(s) 203 may communicate with the blockchain ledger 204 via a message bus 205.

If a container is recycled and matched by the verification exchange 403 then the recycling exchange system 203 may send a message that includes the details of the location of recycling, date, time etc. along with an indication that they have been matched to the manufacturer system. The account management module 402 may receive a match message from the exchange that includes or references different data transaction requests that have been matched by the exchange. This information may then be used by the system for further processing and interaction with the blockchain and for the collation of statistics.

In summary, when a container is recycled the system may provide information relating to the transaction to the accounting system. This will provide marketing information for manufacturers, and provide security under data protection regulations because there is no direct access to the consumer data. The account management module for example records a transactions count and this information could be used to validate transactions or be used to drive a revenue stream changing a token amount for the operation of the system.

Within the recycling exchange computer system, elements are configured to store details relating to the matched messages. Several recycling transactions may be aggregated from the various blockchain transactions sorted by manufacturer and added to the transaction account subsystem recorded to the blockchain, this information is used to calculate a reprocessing fee and information as to the processing and utilisation of the recycling location

In certain examples, the recycling exchange process may include validating information, such as querying the blockchain to determine if there is a record of sufficient collateral recorded on the blockchain. For example, every consumer member may have their own digital wallet 206 that is associated with transactions that have already been recorded to the blockchain. The validation process may use the digital wallet 206 of a given clearing member to query that the member has sufficient collateral recorded to the blockchain. The validation may also include validating aspects of the submitted information and other types of features or attributes of the submitted information may also be validated based on application need. Referring back to Figure 1 , when a container has been recycled, a reverse vending network or a retailer network may scan the unique code of the container that has been recycled and a message is sent to the recycling exchange 203. The code on the container will be read and scanned and compared to the records on the block. The received message may also include exchange member identifiers that correspond to the identity submitter that is generated either by way of a consumer digital wallet, a retailer wallet or a voucher generation wallet. Exchange members (e.g., members that are registered with exchange and in receipt of a digital wallet may in certain instances also be registered as a member of alternative loyalty systems such as a retailer loyalty system).

The recycling exchange 203 verifies the message validity by using a private key in response to a positive match message generates and transmits the value from the blockchain transaction to a digital wallet. Using this method removes any element of fraud and provides a full reconciliation of processed plastic. Within the recycling exchange, elements are configured to store details relating to the matched messages.

As mentioned above, the recycling exchange 203 may include a verification engine 403. The function of the verification engine will be described with reference to Figure 5 which illustrates schematically the function of the verification engine 403. Once a message has been received that indicates a container has been recycled (or at least accepted into a recycling system such as by a reverse vending network 207 or retailer network 208), the message is validated. In this example, validation is the process of verifying that the container is live and is open for recycling and that the value associated with the container is available for transfer, for example, the container has not already been recycled.

After validation, the verification engine 403 begins a novation process. Novation is a process where the values of the container steps between two counterparties (e.g., consumer members that are registered with the recycling exchange computer system 403 or third-party entities that have accounts and are registered, such as charities).

In certain examples novation may be performed by the reverse recycling system and a voucher generated. In such a case there may be a blockchain transaction from the system (e.g., a digital wallet associated therewith) that received the trade to a system that handles the novation process (e.g., a retailer digital wallet associated therewith) and back again.

A data transaction request associated with a client identifier’s private key is generated by the verification engine and indicates the digital wallet to which the transaction should be created. When the container was created, a creation record was created and added to the blockchain that included the unique identifier and a value associated with that identifier. When the container is recycled, a processing record is created on the blockchain 204 that includes information about the recycling. The data transaction request transfers the value associated with the container upon creation to a digital wallet identified by a unique identifier included with the scanning message received by the verification engine.

A blockchain transaction includes the match data of the match between the first data transaction request (the creation record) and the second data transaction request (the processing record). The value is thus transferred between the manufacturer identifier and the digital wallet identifier by association with the first transaction. In other words, the creation record and the processing record (recycling record) must match in terms of keys as when the processing record is written to the blockchain it will appear further up in the ledger. This way if someone tries to reprocess the same code again it will see the new record first and detect an error.

If a voucher is requested, then the transaction is contained within the reverse vending machine and a voucher code printed. If a voucher is requested then the wallet will not be updated. If the reverse vending machine or retailer has the ability to print a voucher then a voucher will be printed. If the recycling point does not have this ability then a voucher may be emailed or made available through the digital wallet.

Regardless of the retrieval selection the processing system is configured to generate at least one further blockchain transaction that includes data for a first transaction from the first client identifier to an intermediary identifier showing that this container has been processed. At least one further blockchain transaction will also submitted to the blockchain detailing the completion of the transaction. In other words, the original record will appear, as will the processing record and another record when the value has been transferred to the client wallet.

The digital wallet 206 may in one example be a digital wallet of a consumer and thus the consumer can extract value. In further examples, the digital wallet may be associated with a retailer or a reverse vending system operator and when the container is recycled, the consumer may receive cash or a voucher directly from the system provider and the system provider may receive the value of the container from the digital wallet.

In this latter scenario, where the consumer returns a container to a registered retailer the retailer may scan the container code and after validation, the verification engine 403 carries out a novation process and the value is novated to the wallet associated with the retailer. The retailer may then directly pass cash or a voucher to the consumer.

Figure 6 illustrates an example of a consumer processing a container return. A digital wallet 206 is associated with a consumer and has a unique cryptographic identifier or private key. This private key is sent to the recycling exchange in a data message to the exchange with an instruction to process a number of container returns. The message may be sent from a reverse vending machine or retailer as described above. The recycling record may include at least the unique identifier of the container and may optionally include further information such as the time and date of recycling, location of recycling and the method of recycling, for example. The recycling exchange 403 verifies the identity of the wallet holder 206 and creates a verification process using the wallet’s private key. The identity of the wallet holder will be verified initially by a digital wallet application running on a consumer phone or by a unique code associated with a store loyalty card. This identifier of the container is used to retrieve a creation record from the blockchain which is matched to a deposit (optionally referred to as recycling or processing) record which is appended to the block on the blockchain. If verified, the value associated with the container is transferred to the wallet 206. The blockchain is updated to show that the container has now been validated and retrieved.

It has been described above how systems and methods can be provided for recording, transferring, clearing and settling transactions used in a distributed blockchain ledger for the purposes of tracking recyclable containers. Consumers and retailers may be provided with cryptographic or virtual wallets, the cryptographic wallets enable the user to access a peer-to-peer network of computing devices on which the distributed blockchain ledger is managed. The values made available through the network are embedded directly onto blockchain ledger itself. When a consumer presents a recyclable container back into the network by way of a reverse vending machine or a retailer scanner, the system will transfer any associated value to the user and verify that all transactions are in compliance with applicable rules.

The users' cryptographic wallets may include specialised cryptographic and tokenisation protocols which are employed to update the blockchain ledger and exchange virtualised data tokens among the cryptographic wallets in order to facilitate trading and to authenticate of transactional values. The platform converts the deposit values into virtual data tokens that can be exchanged for cash or other instruments/vouchers. The blockchain network provides an audit trail that can be utilised in real-time to track and validate all transactions involving the data tokens. All transactions, including previous transactions that resulted in a recycling exchange, can be self-verified by using the audit trail provided within the blockchain, thus providing a high level of transparency and protection to all interested individuals. Some or all information may be recorded within the blockchain network, this information may include data associated with any transaction, any parties to the transactions, and any data about the recycling asset itself. Instead of embedding an impractically large amount of data into the virtual data tokens, the tokens will include a key or cypher that will be used to unlock and securely access the values. A centralised banking institution is not required to perform clearance and settlement functions the system is able to process transactions quickly and efficiently. Furthermore, because the record keeping or auditing process for all transactions is “dematerialised” (e.g., conducted and stored electronically without the need for physical papers or handwritten signatures), all of the relevant documentation is immediately available the transactions may be implemented using one or more event-driven programs and protocols that utilize the blockchain network to facilitate, verify, execute and enforce the rules associated with the recycling exchange. The protocols associated with the transactions may be incorporated into the cryptographic wallets or otherwise made available through the platform.

An entry in a blockchain ledger pertaining to a container, that is the creation record of a blockchain transaction, may include information that enables a master account (e.g., a family account) to provide permissions to one or more sub-accounts (e.g., a child-account in the family office) which enable the child accounts to access, or otherwise utilize a value. For example, a digital wallet of a master account may be linked to the transaction and the transaction also linked to a sub-account. Entries in the blockchain which pertain to the container value may identify the master account as the owner of the value and may further include parameters or fields that identify child-accounts that have been granted the permissions. A user associated with the master account can grant or remove permissions to the value as needed. An entry may be appended to the blockchain each time permissions are updated so that the system can at all times can determine whether a particular account has permissions to access, or otherwise utilise a value. A further example of how the described concepts might be implemented will now be described in the context of Figure 7. In this further example, a blockchain network is provided with each manufacturer utilizing a specific, separate register/ledger contained within a blockchain network. Unlike standard blockchain distributed ledger technology where consensus is normally reached by processing a specific algorithm, within a single function, in this instance consensus may be defined as the full circle verification of the correctness of a set of transactions comprising a block.

A network blockchain is provided with each manufacturer’s transaction and containers (assets) stored within a single blockchain in an associated blockchain network. This provides anonymity to each manufacturer and also provides security in relation to each company’s sensitive production data.

The network is both formed and managed by the multiple organisations who contribute resources to it. Within the network all participants have known identities. Public Key Infrastructure is used to generate cryptographic certificates which are tied to companies, network components, and end users or client applications. As a result, data access control can be manipulated and governed on the broader network and on channel levels. At no time is data shared between manufacturers or can data be interpreted or seen by other entities other than the controlling authority. This permissioned notion coupled with the existence and capabilities of channels, helps address scenarios where privacy and confidentiality are paramount concerns. A Channel is a private “subnet” of communication between two or more specific network members, mainly used for conducting private and confidential transactions. So despite the fact that two manufacturers exist in the same network they are not party or aware of any transaction belonging to the other communicated to the blockchain.

Consensus is achieved when the order and results of a block’s transactions have met the explicit policy criteria checks. These checks and balances take place during the lifecycle of a transaction and include the usage of endorsement policies to dictate which specific members must endorse a certain transaction class. Prior to commitment, peers will employ these system chaincodes to make sure that enough endorsements are present, and that they were derived from the appropriate entities. Moreover, a versioning check will take place during which the current state of the ledger is agreed or consented upon before any blocks containing transactions are appended to the ledger. This final check provides protection against double transfer operations and other threats that might compromise data integrity and allows for functions to be executed against non- static variables. Here the terminology chaincode refers to a program that typically handles business logic agreed by members of the network. It can be considered a“Smart Contract” where a smart contract is a piece of computer code that is capable of monitoring, executing and enforcing an agreement In the present implementation example, a chaincode manages ledger state through transactions submitted by applications.

In the example implementation of figure 7, a blockchain network may be used to underpin the supply side of the recycling engine and a separate blockchain network may be used to underpin a consumer and retailer exchange. Within this exchange, values are traded between the manufacturer ledger and consumer wallets by way of a frontend exchange. As containers are recycled the return values are traded between the manufacturer and the consumer. In addition, this exchange operates and offer trades between consumer wallets with recognised external vendors to reward consumers for undertaking recycling. Consumers may opt in to receive marketing offers from registered partners and suppliers operation within the exchange.

Transactions within the blockchain may be recorded in a separate transactional database for audit and data mining purposes.

A new protocol may be created to transfer data between a recycling blockchain and a consumer exchange blockchain. For example, the protocol may include that an encrypted transaction is sent from one peer to another and verified by a third audit peer. The blockchain network may be built up from the peers operated and associated with different companies maintaining a high level of anonymity between them. To effect this, a private “subnet” of communication may be utilised between two or more specific network members, for the purpose of conducting private and confidential transactions.

An example of a possible blockchain network implementation would be using the Hyperledger (RTM) blockchains and related tools. For example, the Hyperledger (RTM) Fabric provides a blockchain framework using multiple ledgers. Alternatively, the ethereum or other similar frameworks may be utilised as would be understood by the skilled person.

As mentioned, figure 7 illustrates an overview of a system 700 for implementing the present concepts. A first blockchain network 701 is provided in which each manufacturer 702 of containers has an individual ledger 703. A miscellaneous ledger may be provided for those manufacturers unable to maintain their own ledger.

At container creation, each manufacturer stores on the ledger the unique code applied to the container together with a value associated with the container.

A further blockchain network 704 is provided for interface with a plurality of cryptographic wallets 705. The cryptographic wallets are computing devices which include encryption protocols for securely storing a virtual portfolio of values.

The front-end blockchain exchange controls the digital wallets and also operates an exchange where the values associated with containers may be traded (swapped) for vouchers or retailer promotions.

A recycling exchange 706 is provided to process the recycling transactions.

In one example, the recycling engine 706 may store the unique identifier associated with the recycling container directly on the distributed blockchain ledger 703 associated with each manufacturer by utilising a one-way hashing algorithm to append one or more blocks to the distributed blockchain ledger. A block is made up of multiple transactions or a block may be one transaction. When the consumer 707 returns a container to a reverse vending machine 708 or a retailer 709, the reverse vending machine system or the retailer may send a message to the recycling engine containing the unique code applied to the container which has been scanned and an identifier of the digital wallet.

An interface 710 may be provided between the recycling engine 706 and each of the blockchain networks 701 and 704. The interface may be a chaincode interface or smart contract interface as known in the art to facilitate interaction between the recycling engine 706 and the nodes of the blockchain networks. A chaincode or smart contract typically handles business logic agreed to by members of the network. As mentioned above, for the purposes of this description, a chaincode interface, smart contracts or other interface between the recycling engine and the blockchain ledgers may be interchangeable. Each terminology has a meaning in standard blockchain implementations depending on which implementing technology is being used.

The recycling engine provides the facility to transfer the value associated with the container from the manufacture blockchain to the frontend exchange and create a new blockchain transaction associating the value to the digital wallet. Two transactions will be produced each side of the settlement engine.

There is no wallet associated with the manufacturer only a value on the container record. The frontend blockchain is used to manage the consumer/retailer wallets and facilitate the value exchanges. At settlement time a container transaction is created to show settlement and following verification a value recorded is created on the frontend that is associated with a manufacturer record but it may not be a duplication.

In summary, in this example implementation, each ledger (Block) is associated with a manufacturer for example Company A Cola, Orange, Water. When the record is stored the block identifier will point to the type for example the“bottle is a cola bottle made by company A of this type of plastic produced on this date” this will act a pointer to the appropriate blockchain within the network. The record will be stored within this block. When the bottle is recycled the scanned container will be identified and the recorded retrieved from the appropriate block in the blockchain network.

A transaction may be created using additional information included in the transfer. The transaction created is verified and the transaction encrypted using public key encryption. A production transaction may be committed to the blockchain which would contain a flag to show the data was verified and that the transaction was open for recycling. When a bottle is presented for recycling the record would be found, verified and a new version of the record may be produced with a recycled status of closed with a value of zero. At this point the value associated would be transferred via a settlement engine and a new blockchain record written in the frontend blockchain associated with the various digital wallets.

Although the present disclosure primarily describes the platform in terms of the recycling of containers and the rewarding of consumers it should be recognized that the principles described herein can be utilized to recycle any type of asset, including any type of physical or digital value associated with recycling, and is not limited. Examples include beverage containers, bottles, cans, tins as well as nappies or diapers and allow similar assets which are currently undesirably discarded.

The inventive principles discussed herein provide a variety of advantages. They allow for a comprehensive and self-managing electronic system which records information relating to recyclable containers creates transactions that can be processed quickly and efficiently without requiring actions by multiple actors (e.g., retailers, banks, recycling sites, etc.) and without requiring hard copies of documents. The blockchain-enabled techniques provide a technological framework which permits recycling to be exchanged in a more transparent and accessible manner. Because the blockchain ledger maintains a record of all transactions, the system allows for instantaneous verification of transaction histories associated with the recycling, thus removing fraud risks. These advantages are accomplished using a technological framework that relies on novel protocols for communicating with nodes or computing devices in a peer-to-peer network that maintains a distributed database. The protocols are incorporated, at least in part, into a new type of cryptographic wallet which is configured to utilize smart contracts in connection with certain transaction activities prior to appending blocks to distributed blockchain database. The cryptographic wallet further utilizes hashing techniques to store assets directly on the blockchain ledger itself, while securely protecting assets stored in the wallet using encryption techniques. These and other technical aspects of the invention provide a technological framework that for managing security transactions that is efficient, transparent and self-managing, and which overcomes the shortfalls associated with large blockchain systems.

Methods and processes described herein can be embodied as code (e.g., software code) and/or data. Such code and data can be stored on one or more computer-readable media, which may include any device or medium that can store code and/or data for use by a computer system. When a computer system reads and executes the code and/or data stored on a computer-readable medium, the computer system performs the methods and processes embodied as data structures and code stored within the computer-readable storage medium. In certain embodiments, one or more of the steps of the methods and processes described herein can be performed by a processor (e.g., a processor of a computer system or data storage system). It should be appreciated by those skilled in the art that computer-readable media include removable and non-removable structures/devices that can be used for storage of information, such as computer-readable instructions, data structures, program modules, and other data used by a computing system/environment. A computer-readable medium includes, but is not limited to, volatile memory such as random access memories (RAM, DRAM, SRAM); and non-volatile memory such as flash memory, various read-only-memories (ROM, PROM, EPROM, EEPROM), magnetic and ferromagnetic/ferroelectric memories (MRAM, FeRAM), and magnetic and optical storage devices (hard drives, magnetic tape, CDs, DVDs); network devices; or other media now known or later developed that is capable of storing computer-readable information/data. Computer-readable media should not be construed or interpreted to include any propagating signals.

Further exemplary embodiments of the present disclosure are set out in the following numbered clauses:

Numbered clause 1. A computerized system for managing recycling values over a network, the system comprising: a plurality of computing devices that are in communication with one another over a peer-to-peer communication network, wherein each of the computing devices includes a processor and a physical storage medium that stores: at least a portion of a distributed blockchain ledger or blockchain network that includes a distributed database that records information associated with recycling transactions that occur on the peer-to-peer communication network; and a cryptographic wallet that includes encryption protocols for securely storing a virtual portfolio of values associated with the recycling of containers and that further includes: a set of protocols for recording values, wherein the first set of protocols are configured to store the recycling values directly on the distributed blockchain ledger by utilizing a one-way hashing algorithm to append one or more blocks to the distributed blockchain ledger, the one or more blocks include type value and manufacturing information associated with the recycling containers, sets of security rules comprising regulations and restrictions governing the processing, and ownership identifiers which identify one or more owners of the values associated, and a second set of protocols for transferring ownership of the value to other cryptographic wallets stored on other computing devices in the peer-to-peer communication network; wherein the first set of protocols and second set of protocols, when executed by the processor, enable updating of the distributed database associated with the distributed blockchain ledger to issue and transfer the values.

Numbered clause 2. The system of numbered clause 1 , wherein the second set of protocols utilize one or more event driven transactions which are configured to transfer ownership of the value of the associated with the recyclable containers, the one or values being made available through the cryptographic wallet and permitting information for satisfying ownership transfer terms. Numbered clause 3. The system of numbered clause 2, wherein the second set of protocols enable the cryptographic wallet to access and retrieve the sets of rules from the distributed blockchain ledger and to configure to verify compliance with the regulations and restrictions which apply to the trading of the values reclaimed via recycling.

Numbered clause 4. The system of numbered clause 2, wherein a first set of blocks are appended to the distributed blockchain ledger in response to recycling being appended to the distributed blockchain ledger to indicate whether or not the values are completed or denied.

Numbered clause 5. The system of numbered clause 1 , wherein the first set of protocols utilize one or more event-driven recycling values which are configured to allow new values to be associated to the system, the one or more values being made available through the cryptographic wallet and permitting a registered issuer to offer alternative tokens.

Numbered clause 6. The system of numbered clause 1 , wherein the cryptographic wallet enables a value that pools together totals from a plurality of recycling values from various manufacturers.

Numbered clause 7. The system of numbered clause 6, wherein the cryptographic wallet provides one or more event driven smart contracts that enable the plurality of manufacturers to contribute to recycling fund and to transfer assets from the fund to a plurality of charities.

Numbered clause 8. The system of numbered clause 7, wherein the cryptographic wallet is configured to append blocks to the distributed blockchain ledger associated with spending and transferring value transactions.

Numbered clause 9. The system of numbered clause 1 , wherein the cryptographic wallet is configured to append blocks to the distributed blockchain ledger to enable a master account associated to manage the transfer and verification of the ledger for audit purposes.