News Supply chain

Tata Steel explores blockchain for traceability


Tata Steel UK is working with blockchain startup iov42 to create a prototype for a blockchain steel traceability solution. The work is part of a government-funded Blockchain Challenge in the UK’s Welsh region.

A Digital Product Passport is one of the objectives of the work which will involve getting feedback from Tata Steel UK’s customers. Iov42 will create an initial plan for a more substantial end-to-end solution. 

“We’re always looking to learn, adapt and evolve to support commercial opportunities, and we’re confident that this exploratory project will allow us to assess the feasibility of blockchain to overcome existing obstacles,” said Richard Clarke, New Product Development Manager at Tata Steel UK.

Tata Steel is part of a World Economic Forum initiative, the Mining and Metals Blockchain Initiative, which developed a proof of concept for carbon emissions.

It’s not the first time that blockchain has been used for steel traceability. Several initiatives kicked off in 2020. For example, the Government of Canada granted money to Canadian startups Peer Ledger and Mavennet for digital traceability. Peer Ledger had an existing blockchain solution used for gold.

Austria’s RIDDLE&CODE, which combines IoT and blockchain, partnered with S1Seven to automate the notarization of metal certificates for steel. It estimates that 100 million manual paper certificates are generated for steel annually.

China has multiple steel-focused initiatives. The country’s main metals trade body created a consortium for a blockchain-based supply chain for the industry. And the country’s largest producer, Baosteel, developed a solution to generate certificates used for traceability, regulatory supervision, and ultimately to raise finance backed by the certificates.

Image Copyright: kwangmoo / 123rf