The stackable "books" sit on an internet-connected tray

The stackable "books" sit on an internet-connected tray

Pernod Ricard has unveiled an internet-connected home drinks system that delivers the group's spirits brands to consumers by post.

The so-called “Project Gutenberg”, which is still in early development and has no release date, uses stackable “books” that resemble computer hard drives. The books contain a different Pernod spirits brand and sit on a tray that informs a computer, or mobile device when the liquid is running low.

A new book, or "postable" can be ordered online, with Pernod hoping for delivery within 24 hours.

Alain Dufosse, the head of Pernod's in-house Breakthrough Innovation Group, claimed Project Gutenberg is “ground-breaking” and “will enlarge Pernod Ricard's business instead of taking share”. 

Dufosse also said it taps into a growing global trend for entertaining. Consumers in developing countries where public safety is an issue would also benefit.

“In some countries it is too dangerous to take public transport, so people prefer to entertain at home,” he said.

However, Dufosse denied the drinks books will replace bottles in the home.

“We don't see it as a competitor to bottles,” he said. “It is not one or the other.”

The system will also help consumers mix cocktails as it keeps track of what spirits are available. It already has a database of about 3,500 cocktails and offers tutorials to guide consumers “step-by-step” through the cocktail-making process, Dufosse said.

In an exclusive interview with just-drinks last year, Bacardi CEO Ed Shirley said the industry needed to better present the spirits category to consumers.  

“If we as an industry can help consumers better understand how to make cocktails and enjoy them, we can continue to fuel growth in the sector,” Shirley said.