Wholechain and Trace Register Enable Interoperability Between Suppliers and Buyers
Bloomfield Hills, MI and Seattle, WA – Leading traceability solution providers Trace Register and Wholechain are working together to simplify seafood supply chain traceability. Their integration, following the Global Dialogue for Seafood Traceability (GDST) standards, enables interoperability for effortless data exchange between suppliers and buyers. This collaboration addresses one of the biggest challenges posed by evolving traceability regulations – data sharing between multiple stakeholders – and underscores the importance of data standards as a ‘common language’ among technology solutions.
Both companies recognize the challenges that suppliers encounter amid expanding traceability demands. The broader seafood industry consensus, including organizations like the FDA, FAO, USAID Oceans, and SALT, acknowledges traceability as a useful tool for food safety, combating illegal fishing, and ensuring species authenticity. However, implementation is challenging due to fragmented data collection, disparate standards, fraud, technological gaps, and a lack of interoperability — factors the 2021 NOAA Fisheries workshop highlighted as hurdles to widespread adoption.
As GDST members, Wholechain and Trace Register have worked closely with major suppliers to understand their data challenges and test bidirectional data sharing, creating a partnership that unlocks significant advantages:
- Enhanced Operational Efficiency: Suppliers can choose the solution best suited to their needs and budgets while seamlessly exchanging data with buyers, all within a cohesive system.
- Cost Mitigation: Streamlined data collection and sharing mitigate the risks associated with manual transfers, which helps address data loss or tampering concerns. Such issues contribute to the industry’s annual losses of up to $50 billion, according to an economist at the Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries at the University of British Columbia.
- Simplified Buyer / Supplier Coordination: Interoperability means less time spent on back-and-forth communication to align on what data will be shared and how (and through which system).
The collaboration paves the way for widespread traceability adoption and sets an example to other solution providers.
“The best example of interoperability today is email: you don’t ask someone which email provider they use, you just send them an email,” says Jayson Berryhill, co-founder of Wholechain. “In contrast, it is common for suppliers in the seafood industry to have to purchase multiple traceability systems in order to share information with their different customers. This is not only frustrating for the industry, but also costly and counterproductive. In order to scale traceability to be the norm throughout the industry, solution providers must work together using a common language (GS1 / GDST). We are proud to collaborate with Trace Register as this aligns with our shared commitment to serve the seafood industry and promote supply chain transparency in the global food system.”
”Establishing standards and communication protocols are an essential first step in this journey. Trace Register, Wholechain, and many other stakeholders have worked with GDST for years to see these firmly established,” said Heath England, President of Trace Register. “Now, we are at the point where all that time and effort starts to pay off. Trace Register and Wholechain can pass actual data between trading partners and systems. It is the goal we have all been working towards. We are excited to work with Wholechain and bring years of meetings and back-room work into the real world.”
Trace Register and Wholechain are already seeing the rapid expansion of traceability in the seafood industry and the need for competing systems to collaborate effectively. They look forward to continued collaboration on various initiatives, including the FAO Blue Ports Initiative with Seafood Alliance for Legality and Traceability (SALT), for which they shared the stage in Manta, Ecuador, in June and conversations around the practical implementation of traceability in seafood supply chains.
About Trace Register
Trace Register is the proven global seafood full-chain traceability leader, serving clients in more than 50 countries for over 15 years. Its TR5 platform takes an unprecedented approach, utilizing cutting-edge technologies and industry standards such as GDST and GS1 to create interoperability and transform seafood supply chains. TR5 provides the confidence to proactively address critical challenges and threats, plus regulatory requirements such as SIMP and FDA FSMA 204. The results are fewer problems, higher margins, and more satisfied customers. Visit www.traceregister.com to learn more.
Wholechain is a blockchain-based traceability solution built to enable trust, coordination, and transparency in fragmented supply chains. Wholechain works across commodities, allowing businesses to manage risks and increase efficiencies while enabling consumers to make more responsible decisions. Wholechain is part of numerous industry initiatives for interoperability including GS1’s Seafood Industry Blockchain Interoperability POC, and is a former winner of the Fish 2.0 competition at Stanford for Supply Chain Innovation, and a winner of the FDA’s New Era of Smarter Food Safety Food Traceability Challenge. Find out more at Wholechain.com.