Posted 01/06/2021

Forensic verification and blockchain technology will support customers from automotive, electronics, mining and agriculture industries to show evidence of the provenance, authenticity and sustainability characteristics of their products

Digital transparency company Everledger has joined forces with Source Certain International (SCI), a leading provider of scientific provenance verification services to redefine the industry benchmark of supply chain traceability and transparency in the mining and minerals sectors.

As global supply chains come under more pressure and scrutiny by consumers and regulators to be transparent and sustainable, the two companies have come together to offer their respective complementary technologies, secure Blockchain and AI with scientific provenance verification. The resulting solution will offer a robust traceability platform to global supply chains, with the security and transparency of blockchain technology backed up by scientific evidence.

There is a growing demand for establishing new industry standards for the sustainable and ethical sourcing of fibres, agricultural produce, metals, precious stones and minerals. The ability to conduct scientific validation against an immutable digital fingerprint linked to its source (mine, farm or factory) will be a key requirement for supply chains – especially those that can benefit downstream from key sustainability reporting such as human rights, carbon footprint calculation and water usage.

Likewise, the pressure on governments globally to be more proactive with the instruments they have available to mitigate unethical and potential criminal activities within complex supply chains will make further regulation in this area imminent.

As end consumers and the brands with which they interact demand more transparency within their supply chains, there is a critical need to mediate this transparency. This means that key stakeholders of the supply chain will need to share information about not just where materials and products have come from but also how they have been made and how they are disposed of. The ability to verify this information, evidence it, and mitigate the risk of greenwashing will set apart this combined offering from SCI and Everledger.

Cameron Scadding, Managing Director of SCI, said: “‘Out of sight, out of mind’ has been the business-as-usual approach for some metals and minerals supply chains. A more connected consumer expects transparency in their product’s supply chain. They are interested in where the item and its components are from and the impact their purchase is having on people and the planet. There is no silver bullet solution to the issues that the various industries and their supply chains face, but our partnership with Everledger is a great step towards more transparency in critical and strategic minerals, metals, and more generally the battery supply chain.”

Scott Austin, Senior Vice President at Everledger, stated: “Australia’s position in the electric vehicle and broader lithium-ion battery supply chains is significant. By working together with SCI to develop and implement technologies and processes that support enhanced trust and transparency, we will bring to life a powerful set of tools for all supply chain stakeholders to demonstrate and report their best practices in Corporate Social Responsibility. In our complimentary solutions, we merge forensic identity linked to immutable chain of custody and traditional data capture solutions for use by industry and government in compliance processes.”

Applications for supply chain transparency

SCI and Everledger have been working in the precious metals and gemstones industries and have had significant exposure to opaque and inefficient practices that are rife in the industry. SCI has assisted law enforcement in diamond theft and corruption cases through their forensic capabilities, while Everledger has pioneered the use of blockchain technology to enable ever more transparency in the complex supply chains of diamonds and gemstones.

SCI, who are considering an initial public offering (IPO) later in the year, developed the technology TSW Trace® to verify product provenance through the scientific analysis of the product’s chemical, elemental, trace metal and isotopic levels, enables the identification of the precise environmental origin of a product.

When combined with Everledger’s blockchain and Internet of Things capabilities, stakeholders in complex supply chains can provide evidence of the origin, characteristics, and chain of custody of products in industries such as metals and minerals, fashion, agriculture, lithium-ion batteries, art, and many others.

SCI and Everledger are key service and technology providers to the Trusted Supply Chain project by the Australian Future Battery Industries Cooperative Research Centre (FBICRC), which is due to commence late 2021. Both companies are also collaborating with another technology company in the geological space, OreFox, to build and implement algorithms that support middle market identification and validation of minerals. This can help, for instance, the Electric Vehicle Battery supply chain, which faces significant challenges for a more transparent and sustainable provenance of metals and minerals.

Warwick Anderson, CEO at OreFox, said: “Companies will be forced to reconsider their sourcing policies and push the limits of due diligence guidelines to incorporate newer and better technologies that can robustly verify ESG and origin claims of their materials. By working with Everledger and SCI, we believe that our reach across different industries will grow significantly, which is good news for those companies that value speed, quality and transparency in their supply chains.”

About Everledger

Founded in 2015, Everledger is an independent technology company helping businesses surface and converge asset information, using a symphony of secure technologies, including blockchain, artificial intelligence, intelligent labelling and Internet of Things. Our purpose is to contribute greater clarity and confidence in marketplaces where transparency matters most.

Everledger is committed to helping every link in the industry value chain to achieve a positive environmental impact from traceability. Our technology brings increased transparency to supply chains, benefiting stakeholders who adopt sustainable practices, while bringing visibility to their end consumers. We digitally streamline our clients’ compliance processes, to help them demonstrate the lifetime story of an asset with greater efficiency and accuracy. As technology partners, we also support in powering resilience and sustainability. With information out in the open, we believe the value of many industries – from diamonds, to fine wines, to e-recycling – will be shared by all stakeholders throughout the value Chain.

Everledger is certified with the ISO 27001 standard by the British Assessment Bureau, a testament to our robust, ongoing and systematic approach to information security. Everledger has been awarded a Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum in 2018.

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About SCI

Source Certain International (SCI) are global leaders in provenance science and technology. Their scientific technology enables the verification of a product’s provenance, independent of claims and labels. Source Certain technology was first used 40 years ago where Chief Scientist Dr R. John Watling pioneered a scientific method to determine the provenance of gold and diamonds to assist with criminal investigations. The technology, TSW Trace™ evolved to a commercial application as a forward-facing supply chain integrity solution applied across most food or non-food sectors. Using proprietary TSW Trace™ technology, SCI analyses the relationship between a product and its environment by analyzing trace elements, isotopes, chemicals and molecules to create a unique chemical fingerprint for the product and its matching location of origin. The construction of the product’s chemical fingerprint allows Source Certain to verify the provenance of a product mid-supply chain.

Value claims like sustainable and ethical production, and origin of product are provenance-based claims highlighting the importance of determining origin to a high level of specificity.

SCI deploys its technology within broad supply chain transparency strategies that incorporate in-market verification and surveillance-type programs. Their vision is for supply chains to operate transparently, with integrity, and trusted by consumers to deliver what is promised.

Source Certain has extensively applied their technology through numerous forensic applications over a number of years which now sees this technology as a proven and legally established method, internationally accepted in the courts. Current and historical industry and B2B application includes Seafood, Agriculture, Horticulture, Wine, Cannabis, Critical & Strategic Minerals and Rare Earths and others.

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