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Supply Chain Traceability: A Spotlight on Timber

By Hollie Bridgland | 4 October 2022

With the new European Union Deforestation Regulation (EUDR) soon to be replacing the European Union Timber Regulation (EUTR), we decided to speak to Importers across the UK, Italy, France, Belgium and Austria to understand their level of preparedness for the incoming legislation, their attitudes to traceability solutions to meet these new due diligence requirements, as well as barriers and concerns. 

Launched today, the research revealed that whilst 74% of timber importers are not yet  prepared for the upcoming changes in regulation, 72% are in fact keen to get ahead. However, what is holding them back  is their misplaced fears and lack of understanding of how traceability solutions, such as Distributed Ledger Technology, (DLT), can support them. However, interestingly, concerns are quite evenly spread, showing that changing regulations and emerging technologies are equally as troublesome for those working in what is traditionally, quite a paper based industry.

Other key findings include: 

  • 83% spend half or more of their working hours tracking down information requested by customers – the necessity for timber businesses to stay in control of their documentation grows when we consider what’s at stake. If businesses are found to insufficiently conduct due diligence, not only can this lead to reputational damage, but more serious cases of non-compliance can lead to fines, arrests and potentially even prison sentences
  • 42% feel that supply chains are suppressed by a lack of traceability – this is likely  because Importers are simply unable to source enough supply with the level and standard of documentation required to perform the necessary due diligence.
  • 56% have misplaced fears that using traceability technology such as blockchain could lead to the loss of trade secrets – this is a common misconception when it comes to DLT solutions. However permissioned DLT allows only those with permission to access your documentation.
  • 53% fear being left behind by more digitally adept organisations adopting traceability solutions – the unfamiliarity with emerging technologies may be contributing towards muted confidence in implementing traceability solutions. But in reality, these systems often don’t require much technical expertise to integrate them within a business’ existing operations.

 

Check out our report today for more industry insights, country breakdowns and tips on how DLT can help Importers prepare for these upcoming regulations. 

 

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