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What exactly is traceability?

Consumers today have a keen interest in buying products that are sustainably and responsibly sourced. It's partly down to the increasing awareness of the impact that development is having on the world and its people and a drive to reduce it, but also because of a desire to purchase only the highest-quality products.

This is particularly the case with food and drink – the public is no longer willing to accept marketing claims from manufacturers and they instead want to see that brands are doing their bit for the planet.

As a result, industry groups and standards have been established to ensure products and ingredients can be traced and labelled adequately; which is where traceability comes in.

Traceability is the ability to verify the history, location or application using documented recorded identification and it is being used in a host of different industries.

Coffee production is one of these, with traceability labels appearing on many products from various countries. It can report back on the premium paid for certain products, controls in place against overselling and impact on the smallholders of production.

The phenomenon is not just about appearing better than the competition, though – it also offers key benefits for producers. For example, it can lead to better profit margins throughout the supply chain, meaning workers can earn a fairer wage.

By displaying the exact origin of their products, manufacturers can prove their corporate social responsibility and assure consumers that they operate ethically.

At DR Wakefield, we offer our clients the possibility of tracing what they buy back to a single origin, region or specific microlot, which enables us both to guarantee the quality of the product and to offer a more informed and engaging experience for your customers.