Jun 07, 2023Ed. Note: This article was previously posted at IoP Journal.
Every segment of activity, culture, sports and even religion has a periodic event that serves as a reference for all its members. The football (soccer) community, for example, has the World Cup every four years. Catholics celebrate Christmas. Brazilians consider Carnival festivities to be a strong part of their culture. And for members of the Internet of Things (IoT) world, there's RFID Journal LIVE!, which recently held its annual conference in Orlando, Fla.
RFID Journal LIVE! is a world reference for updates about topics related to automatic identification and data capture (AIDC) technologies. This year, for example, I focused my lecture on a very important subject for the entire business world, not just for Brazil or for the radio frequency identification (RFID) sector (see this YouTube video).
Despite my being Brazilian and usually addressing topics related to RFID, the IoT, the Internet of Packaging (IoP) and smart supply chain, always with Brazilian success stories, this year my theme was Digital Product Passport (DPP), an initiative of the European Union in search of a circular economy. The project, which starts now and will continue with a roadmap until 2050, will have brutal impacts on all global economies and positive aspects possible, thanks to smart packaging and smart supply chains.
Despite the theme being new in the United States, the success story I presented on the circular economy was that of HP Brasil, which produces a significant amount of the casings for its new printers from recycled plastics at its Brazilian factory. HP Brasil's decision to make its production lines circular in Brazil was a pioneering initiative in the world. The success story is one of those in the Portuguese-language book Economia Circular: Um modelo que dá impulso à economia, gera empregos e protege o meio ambiente, which is on sale at Amazon.
I addressed the DPP theme with a view of the impacts that the European Union's decision should have around the world, as a cascade effect. My talk, titled "Digital Product Passport Reinforces the Power of Smart Packaging," explored why the DPP reinforces the power of smart packaging, what the DPP and its goals are, what the role of the circular economy in DPP will be, how the DPP will change products sold in the European Union, how the E.U. plan will impact the entire world, why smart packaging and smart supply chains are essential for the DPP, and what role RFID and other IoT technologies will play.
I'll provide a little more than the above simple summary of topics. The DPP is a policy instrument of the European Union that aims to support the transition to the circular economy by 2050. The DPP provides information about the sustainability of products and supply chains, with a data set to enable circular products and circular business models. This is possible thanks to the creation of a consistent digital representation of each physical product.
The DPP is intended to positively impact companies, consumers and regulatory authorities, through the activities of verifying and managing the sustainability of products, extending their useful life and reducing the production of waste. The circular economy, by the official definition of the European Union, is a system that maintains the value of products, materials and resources in the economy for as long as possible. To minimize waste generation, products are reused, repaired, remanufactured and recycled.
During my presentation, I presented Sincpress, the first smart packaging center in the Southern Hemisphere, and its activities to help companies to comply with DPP in Brazil. Sincpress is pioneering the way in which companies adopt smart packaging, and it helped HP Brasil to create its circular economy project. The smart packaging center creates conditions, disseminates ideas to implement circular economy solutions and supports the implementation of the Digital Product Passport.
The standardization of product identification codes is at the core of the Digital Product Passport. As a result, GS1 standards have been part of DPP initiatives from the beginning, to ensure that every product is recognized at any link along international supply chains. GS1 provides a set of global standards for identification, data capture and sharing that enable interoperability and traceability. Anyone interested in learning more about the subject, or in having me address the subject in lectures in Brazil or abroad, can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Edson Perin is the editor of IoP Journal Brasil and the founder of Netpress Books Editora, a pioneer company in the production and distribution of content to radio, TV and Internet, and the publication of books on technologies for business.