Last week, Jaguar Land Rover shared that it has trialed blockchain for its leather supply chain traceability, including assessing the material’s carbon footprint.
The auto company worked with blockchain startup Circulor, in which it’s an investor and UK-based Bridge of Weir Leather Company.
“The outcome from this world-first trial will allow us to further improve the sustainability of the leather supply chain around the globe, ensuring the complete traceability of raw materials from origin to vehicle,” said Dave Owen, Executive Director of Supply Chain.
Innovate UK funded the research that involved creating a digital twin of the raw material. The solution used GPS data, biometrics and QR codes to enable step-by-step traceability. The conclusion was that Jaguar Land Rover could use this sort of traceability globally and other sectors such as fashion and footwear could also take advantage of the technology.
The project is part of Reimagine, a program by Jaguar Land Rover targeting net zero carbon emissions by 2039.
“We believe there is a clear opportunity to implement blockchain technology to enhance the existing, world-leading standards of traceability and transparency that exist within UK agriculture and its Cattle Tracing Scheme,” said Dr Warren Bowden, Director of Innovation and Sustainability at the Scottish Leather Group.
“At Bridge of Weir, we see the potential to create carbon-positive leather – if we source from local farms where the livestock is grass fed, where there is no deforestation, and we couple this responsible approach to sourcing with ongoing innovation to create zero carbon and zero waste manufacturing processes.”
This isn’t Jaguar Land Rover’s first DLT project. It previously partnered with IOTA for a smart wallets where drivers can earn credits and use them to pay for traditionally cash-based driving payments, such as highway tolls.
Meanwhile, Circulor is working with several auto manufacturers, including Mercedes, Volvo and Polestar. In many cases, it’s tracking metals and minerals such as Cobalt used in electric vehicle batteries, but also plastics and, in this case, leather.