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e-SCM x Bali Chair: traceability at the heart of Sustainable Fashion


The Bali Chair, an ecosystem prone to innovation

The year 2023 was a pivotal year for the Bali Chair's traceability working group, marked by the successful completion of the Chair's first thesis , that of Pantxika Ospital, consultant specialist in Traceability.

In joint work within the Chair's business ecosystem and also our e-SCM clients, we have experimented with different types of traceability: “Downward Traceability” to attach the data to the Raw Material from its origin and everything throughout its transformation process or even up to the finished product and “Ascending Traceability” where, conversely, the data is collected from the manufacturing process of the finished products going back to the origin of the Material First

“By controlling data, the company can manage its operations more precisely and make its processes completely auditable. This is what we put behind the issue of Traceability & Transparency,” concludes Patrick Bourg.


3 years of R&D on traceability for e-SCM

At the end of 2023, Pantxika Ospital defended her thesis – Promoting circularity and traceability in the field of fashion and textiles: Proposal for the Digital Product Passport (PNP) to achieve product transparency, thus becoming the first doctor of the BALI Chair.

Initially, Pantxika was interested in transparency in the textile sector. By studying the typology of the textile supply chain, she tried to show its complexity and also noted the lack of traceability in this sector, compared to others which are more advanced, particularly with the systematic use of tools. type PLM, ERP, SCM. This observation shows the need to better understand traceability in the textile sector and to move towards finer traceability at product level to move towards more transparency.

To do this, a 3-year field survey was carried out among stores and online sales sites to measure the dynamics between 2021 and 2023. In total, 54 brands were surveyed. During this period, brand communication was driven by the implementation of the AGEC law (Anti-waste for a circular economy) and the environmental display projects of the Climate and Resilience law.


A tool at the intersection of traceability and transparency

In the fashion and textile sector, PNP makes it possible to make the continuity of information more reliable and extend its scope to the entire product life cycle.

By providing all stakeholders with access to relevant information, it notably enables consumers to make informed purchases and promotes the circularity of products and materials. This tool is all the more relevant because it makes it possible to create links between the different players in the product life cycle who sometimes have divergent interests: companies in the supply chain, the different departments of the donor brands. order, distribution companies, consumers, authorities, evaluation, certification and investment companies, communication media, non-governmental organizations and circularity actors.


A subject at the heart of national and European strategies

The Digital Product Passport is a topical subject of interest and is at the heart of national and European strategies. In France, article 13 of the AGEC law requires access to a product sheet relating to the qualities and environmental characteristics for textile products at the time of their purchase. This information presents the proportion of recycled material per product, microfiber emissions (if the product is mainly made up of synthetic materials), traceability of the manufacturing countries, as well as the possible presence of dangerous substances.

The environmental display (Climate and Resilience Law) which should come into force in the coming months will supplement the information accessible to consumers so that they can make an informed purchase and participate in the sector's transition towards greater circularity. The PNP as designed in the thesis allows both to inform but also to extend the lifespan of products by retaining key data for maintenance, repair, resale and recycling. It could store information related to the Repair Bonus and trace the different lives of products to favor the most virtuous companies which contribute to EPR (Extended Producer Responsibility).

The PNP occupies a central position in the regulatory framework in Europe, aligned with the digital and sustainable transition objective set out by the European Green Deal in 2019. The PNP constitutes one of the key actions of the Action Plan of the European Union for the Circular Economy (PAEC). It is part of the Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulations (ESPR), the proposal for which was adopted in July 2023 and which will be finalized in 2024.

The textile sector is targeted as a priority with the 2022 European Union Strategy for Sustainable and Circular Textiles directive and the EU CIRPASS project. The latter focuses on developing a roadmap to establish cross-industry system requirements and design prototypes for the priority sectors of textiles, batteries and electronics.

We are now on the way to the Bali 3 program for the deployment of the Circular Product Passport which aims to extend traceability to all products, in order to generalize the collection and use of information concerning them.