EIA Launches Mobile App to Help Consumers Seek and Demand Wood Product Origin Information to Achieve Greater Supply Chain Transparency
Washington D.C. — Today, the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) launched The Origin App, a mobile application that empowers people to make better choices about what and from whom they buy. EIA believes that people deserve to know where products come from, and how product origins impact the world. The Origin App aims to achieve greater supply chain transparency by helping consumers find or demand raw material origin information for wood products and thereby support ethical and sustainable production practices.
The Origin App empowers consumers to make informed purchases by seeking products with known origin and also to push companies to be more transparent. Origin App users can scan, search for, or browse wood products to discover what kind of wood they contain and where it was harvested. Users can also ask companies to share origin information when it is unavailable. When a consumer utilizes this feature, this will alert EIA to search for origin information on the user’s behalf.
“The vast majority of wood products currently on the market do not contain origin information. Either the manufacturers and retailers don’t know the origin, or they’re not sharing this information with the public,” said David Gehl, Manager of Traceability and Technologies at EIA. “The Origin App gives people an easy way to tell companies they want to know where the raw materials in their products actually come from. The more people demand transparency, the more pressure companies will feel to establish real traceability.”
The Origin App also provides a platform for companies with traceable supply chains to easily share this information with the public, showcasing the hard work they’re doing to ensure responsible supply chains.
In today’s interconnected world, every purchase a consumer makes has a broad impact. Positive purchases – ethically-produced goods from responsible companies – can support local craftsmen, farmers, and entrepreneurs. Negative purchases – products with unknown, harmful, or illegal origins and production practices – often serve to perpetuate poor labor practices, and harm communities and the environment. Knowing more about a product’s origin empowers consumers to make informed buying decisions so that their purchases reduce negative impacts and instead support ethical and sustainable sourcing and production.