Supply chain mapping off the grid: introducing Field Verification

Do you know which palm oil plantations supply your shampoo, or your favorite breakfast spread? What cobalt mines make computers and cell phones possible? The products we use every day have origins in some of the most remote regions of the world. And while power and data networks can be unreliable, that doesn't mean you can't trace supply chains to the source. Founded in 2008 at the University of Washington, Open Data Kit was originally developed to collect data about development projects in remote places. It's a free and open source Android application that lets people collect information while off-line, and synchronizes with a server as soon as the network is available. At Sourcemap we've adopted ODK as part of our new Field Verification service.Farmers, traders, auditors, and government agents use the mobile app to collect information at the source of supply chains. The application is so robust we use it to collect transaction data, product batch numbers, photos of contracts, and to capture signatures on a touch screen. This month we're celebrating the 10,000th Field Verification survey uploaded to Sourcemap. It's bringing supply chain management to the hardest-to-reach places on earth - and making it possible to have accountability from farm to table for any manufactured product. If you don't know where something comes from, soon you will.

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