Traceability is the ability to verify the "history" of a product (food and manufacturing), analysing all the steps of the supply chain: raw materials, their production, their certifications, distribution. Traceability could also be developed after the retail stage, to facilitate the reuse and recycling of waste. A certified brand for its traceability and sustainability invites consumers to buy its products even in secondary markets. As products are tracked, the resulting data gives the products their pedigree and provides a wealth of information that businesses and consumers can use to make better decisions.
Traceability must be well documented and many companies are developing advanced digital tools to ensure data collection and provide all information that demonstrates the traceability of their supply chains.
Traceability and sustainability are closely related to each other; the reputation of the supply chain depends on these two pillars. The products are considered "storytellers" that create a link between consumers and producers.
In addition to optimizing available resources, facilitating the reuse of materials, authenticating products, and ensuring fair and sustainable trade, traceability allows companies to take control of their products’ carbon footprints. End-to-end traceability is the key to product life-cycle analysis, which leads to understanding and controlling the environmental and social impact of any type of product. For every industry, every product, at every level, traceability is the driver of a smarter, safer, more efficient, entirely connected global supply chain – an intelligent supply chain. It is the key to a more sustainable world (https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2019/09/5-ways-traceability-technology-can-lead-to-a-safer-more-sustainable-world).