Your guide to Digital Product Passports

Feb 06, 2024

How can brands, manufacturers, and retailers confidently manage their data in line with upcoming legislation to ensure compliance, consumer trust, and avoid being frozen out?  
 

With an increasing focus on tackling climate change and preserving our planet, sustainability within business operations has shifted from a ‘nice-to-have’ to a necessity. 

And that’s because, in addition to consumer demand for products and services that align with their environmentally friendly values growing, legislation surrounding sustainability efforts is tightening, too. 

In recent years, for example, the UK Environment Act 2021 established a new framework for environmental protection, whilst countries in the EU strive to meet targets and policy objectives set out in the 2030 climate and energy framework. 

Though all industries are impacted in at least some way by climate-friendly legislation, policies, and expectations, this is particularly true for brands, manufacturers, and retailers across the globe. The Californian Garment Worker Protection Act, Norwegian Environmental, Social, and Governance Law, and French AGEC Law are just a handful of examples of legislation currently impacting or due to impact businesses across the industry. 

And for brands, manufacturers, and retailers across the UK, the EU Digital Product Passport is certainly the legislative mandate that ought to be top-of-mind. Forecast to expedite the transition to circularity and supply chain transparency, the legislation will require all businesses selling within the European trading bloc to either comply – or risk being frozen out of the market. 

Let’s explore what Digital Product Passports will mean for you and your business, and how you can secure the value chain data governance needed to meet this legislation. 

Digital Product Passports 

With a focus on supply chain transparency, the Digital Product Passport (DPP) aims to disclose the full product lifecycle with the end consumer – showcasing everything from the origin of the raw materials through to the sale of the item.  

DPPs will provide this level of transparency by digitally collating the data throughout the lifecycle of the product, and then displaying this data in an easy-to-access way to the consumer, such as through a unique QR code, barcode, RFID tag, or NFC chip attached to the item. 

According to inriver’s ebook, Digital Product Passports: how PIM secures transparency, brands and manufacturers will be expected to require structured disclosures on:   

  • Product composition 
  • Raw material sourcing 
  • Supply chain processes 
  • Carbon footprint 
  • Regulatory compliance 

With some industries already expected to undergo early implementation this year, over 30 industries (including retail and manufacturing) will be subject to the DPP rollout by 2030.  

To get ahead of the competition whilst ensuring they’re prepared to tackle the new legislation head-on, many brands are already looking at how they can collate the required information across their supply chains into a secure single source of truth. 

How can you ensure your business is compliant? 

The first step in the journey of supply chain transparency is to get your product data in order. 

Secure and scalable digital data will form the foundation of your DPPs, which is why it’s paramount that businesses move away from outdated and/or siloed systems that typically hinder data reliability. 

With inriver’s advanced Product Information Software (PIM), businesses can onboard all product data, transform that data into rich product information, and share that relevant data with the end consumer – ensuring full compliance with the DPP legislation. 

With inriver, brands and manufacturers can secure the comprehensive product data governance they need to meet the demands of the Digital Product Passport, exceed the expectations of consumers at every touchpoint, and deliver the exceptional experiences their products deserve. 

Commenting on inriver’s PIM, Niels Stenfeldt, Chief Executive Officer at inriver, said: 

Built on a fully flexible data model that promotes ongoing data complexity, the inriver PIM enables our customers not only to survive in this new legislative landscape but to thrive with the opportunities the Digital Product Passport brings. By working together, we can harness the power of product information, embrace transparency, and build a better future.

For more information on ensuring compliance with the DPP legislation, or to hear more about inriver’s SaaS-native, multi-tenant PIM system, get in touch today.