The FFBS-Fashion for Biodiversity Solutions introducing Biodiversity-Cert, is the first ever blockchain based RegTech certification body (CB) for the fashion industry, which employs spatial data and AI to provide reliable and accurate information, related to the organic condition of a farm.
FFBS uses satellite supervision for geo-referencing, which validates the farm and delivers data on land use, history and crop modelling. Moreover, FFBS also integrates data from IoT (Internet of Things) devices, which is to provide soil health and detect the use of chemicals, during the growth period. Besides satellite and IoT, there is a physical auditing by certified inspectors, who are supposed to visit and examine the farm with drones, to record real time data. This is stored into blockchain, and is further used for report generation and biodiversity analysis. The process is known as triangular auditing.
( 1 ) We use data from ESA Copernicus Sentinel 1 & 2 satellites to ensure raw material farming is sustainable. This starts with the geofencing of a specific farm. Wireless network technology sends the data from this piece of land to our control room in Germany, on a weekly basis.
First, the organic, and non-organic nature of the top soil can be analyzed. Spatial data can be used to improve the efficiency and sustainability of raw material production by suggesting new methods, to reduce water use and eradicate chemical applications.
( 2 ) IoT is an advanced device that merges nano-embedded sensors, wireless network technology, cloud computing, and big data analytics. The idea of integrating IoT in raw material farming, is to improve traditional agriculture methods, through a new spectrum of sustainable smart agriculture methods. We offer a blockchain-backed IoT, to track and record activities on the farm.
With our easy-to-use traceability tool, it is easier to record the status, right from seeding to ready crop by scanning the bar or QR code. Moreover, our IoT can help farmers in irrigation and weather management, pest and weed control, etc. On our part, IoT will alarm us with undeclared use of toxic yield-enhancing chemicals in the farmland.
( 3 ) We also ensure an annual forensic audit by our inspector carrying a drone with a high-tech embedded sensor, and collect samples (soil, water, crop and plants) for laboratory examinations. The Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) technology can also capture required data from out-of-reach terrain, on the farmlands. Drones can help provide a range of solutions for sustainable farming, and remove the need for chemicals. It can be used in obtaining aerial imagery for the identification of disease and other agricultural challenges. Nano-embedded sensors inside our drone, can detect the presence of non-organic components on the leaf, stem, and soil surface. It will send us an alarm, if non-compliant activities have been performed.
Forensic Inspectors will personally collect the samples of cotton plant, cotton flower, soil, water etc. for further lab examination. This will involve DNA profiling and gene sequencing, to ensure appropriate origin, and composition. Integrity proofing is done using techniques and tests, on samples such as chemical tests for pesticides level/presence, microbial isolation & classifications and DNA fingerprinting. These laboratory tests will also check the sustainability of the environment, and neighbouring factors such as other crops, water reservoirs, farmer’s health, soil fertility, microbial ecosystem etc.
>> AREAS OF SERVICE
We are initiating services in the Indian sub-continent and Africa. At present, we offer (EU Organic) 2018/848 and NPOP (under accreditation process) certification service for textile crops like cotton, flax, hemp, jute, ramie, silk etc. We give our clients a complete digital experience from application to certificate. We are expected to expand our services with more accreditation worldwide soon.
Our focus crop includes the following:
>> Cotton: Cotton is the most used natural fiber for apparel, with an approximate 24 percent share of the global fiber production. Roughly 0.95 percent of the total cotton harvest is organic. Over 229,000 farmers are estimated to be involved in organic cotton farming. More than 99% of cotton is still non-organic, or uses the conventional way of agriculture with high use of fertilizers, pesticides, and chemical weed controlling. Rivers, lakes, wetlands, and subterranean aquifers are contaminated by the runoff of pesticides, fertilizers, and minerals from cotton farms. However, FFBS helps in supporting organic cotton production, which leads to less carbon emission. It also avoids water contamination, because it is produced without chemical-usage.
>> Flax: Flax is the plant that produces the fibers that are spun into linen thread, and then woven into cloth. Organic flax represents only 0.01% (approx.) of the production worldwide. Flax is one of the most environmentfriendly crops, however, the retting process requires toxic chemicals, which makes it harmful. It needs a little more than hemp, but substantially less than cotton, in terms of fertilizers and insecticides. FFBS provides guidelines to ensure the organic production of linen, and study the circularity of the crop, because of its wide range of applications.
>> Hemp: Hemp is one of the strongest of available natural fibers, for textile processing. Hemp fabric is a sustainable textile, made of fibers, of a very high-yielding crop in the cannabis sativa plant family. It requires less in the way of pesticides or herbicides, and increases soil fertility in the areas, where it is produced. But hemp growers often battle mold, caterpillars, and aphids, as some of the most common pests. Many types of moth and butterfly larvae feed on hemp plants, as they tunnel down into the buds, which is harmed by the insecticides often used. Thus, reducing the organic integrity of the crop and quality of fiber. FFBS makes way for growing it organically, which can be a beneficial alternative for the environment and climate change.
>> Jute: is type of plant fiber, which is widely known for its ability to be spun into strong and coarse threads. Jute has a long history of use in the sacking, carpets, wrapping fabrics (cotton bale), and construction fabric manufacturing industry. It is a yearly renewable resource with a high biomass production per unit of land area, and jute-fiber conversion releases a lot of waste, which acts as a major pollutant. Moreover, the retting process which is similar to flax, utilizing acidic chemicals, which destroys the bacteria and fiber’s organic content. With the help of FFBS, the circularity of jute production, can be maintained and guidelines to reduce chemicals, in the processing will be advised.
>> Ramie: Ramie is one of the oldest fiber crops, used for at least 6,000 years, for fabric production. It is a bast fiber, which comes from the inner bark (phloem) of the vegetative stalks, and not the woody stem itself, or the outer bark. Besides being a perennial plant, the conversion of ramie into fabric, is much more harmful than other crops. About 20-40% of the ramie bark is gummy, and the process of isolating the raw fiber from the gum is difficult. Chemical, enzymatic or microbial methods are used for degumming. FFBS ensures, the damage ramie creates to get converted into a fiber is neutralized, using natural methods, without the use of chemicals.
>> Silk: it is the most elegant textile in the world with distinctive grandeur and natural radiance. Presently, less than 0.01% of silk produced globally, is organic. The process of silk production has both aspects of horticulture and livestock rearing. It involves nurturing of silkworms to produce filaments. The process of horticulture, uses pesticides in mulberry plantation, to produce the high yield hybrid quality. Though Mulberry is a perennial crop, with good foliage and root-spread. Moreover, livestock rearing uses chemicals for genetic manipulation. The process of degumming utilizes enzymatic chemicals, with soaps alkalis which destroy the organic integrity. The boiling of cocoons is also a cruel process, done using sodium carbonate, as cooking chemical for large-scale reeling establishments. With the system of FFBS, we can help silk farmers, produce in an organic way with our new-age technology. Our guidelines will help find alternative to cruelty and avoid chemical usage.