Is the new summer dress made from 100 percent organic cotton? How can you prove it What happened after the cotton was picked until the dress was delivered to the customer?
Traders usually don’t know for sure if the product they are selling was made and manufactured for ethical reasons. Information from suppliers is often limited and often misleading.
Consumers have questions and no answers.
What consumers want
Consumers want to know that the goods they buy are safe, legally and ethically sourced and manufactured without harming the planet. Globally, cotton growing uses more pesticides per acre than any other crop. These chemicals deprive the land of nutrients, pollute the water, and put the people who grow and harvest it at risk.
Many dealers answer. For example, clothing retailer Everlane has pledged that all of the cotton in its clothing will be 100 percent organic by 2023.
It’s not just about clothes. It’s about the food, the shoes, the shoes we wear and the furnishings in our home. Retailers have recognized that they need to be more transparent about their end-to-end supply chain.
Eat. Consumers have growing concerns about the health, safety and freshness of the foods they eat, including the use of harmful ingredients and pesticides. Consumers want to understand and justify terms like organic, free trade, cruelty and free range husbandry. You want more openness.
A 2018 study by the French Ministry of Consumer Affairs found that 49 percent of olive oils sold in that country are mislabelled in terms of quality and product origin. Some bottles even contained canola and sunflower oil instead. It’s probably the same outside of France.
An American importer, Caroli USA, Inc., uses blockchain technology to monitor olive oil from its bottling source in Italy, through customs clearance, to and from US warehouses. This ensures that the customer who buys a premium product receives the original and that the olive oil has been transported at the correct temperature and humidity throughout its journey.
Facility. Wooden furniture and home accessories are not exempt from consumer control. Buyers want to know where an item was made, what type of wood was used, and whether it contributed to deforestation.
Fortunately, wood sourcing is authenticated through third-party certification bodies such as the Forest Stewardship Council, which promotes responsible management of the world’s forests. Companies that receive certification undertake to be transparent about their procurement and manufacturing processes.
Manually tracking items through the supply chain is not the answer. Blockchain technology is widely used today, especially in food, to identify and track individual items. A lettuce or cut of beef can be tracked from farm to fork using smart labels and QR codes, tracking every activity including third party certification and compliance.
Consumers are increasingly demanding proof of ethical procurement and sustainability claims. This is especially important for premium branded products where counterfeiting is common.
Verifiable traceability for dealers:
- Builds trust in a brand
- Reduces fraud, counterfeiting and counterfeiting.
- Fixes quality problems,
- Facilitates instant callbacks.