Every year there are stories of how big clothing companies are getting rich by hiring employees working in “sweat shop” conditions. This is becoming a growing concern for some manufacturers, who understand that the negative publicity can cripple a company. This is why the Alinha Institute has taken the extraordinary step of launching a new program to specifically let consumers know the conditions of those working in their workshops.
There is a growing concern about forced labor in Brazil. A July 3 report found that many were working in near slave labor conditions. This led the Anima Institute to want to take action to combat these conditions. Now it appears that they have found one solution, using blockchain technology to help to combat this growing problem.
According to the company’s website, all brands and apparel companies that help product or supply products for the Alinha Tag will be required to report conditions at their workshops. This will include being subject to a review by Alinha to ensure the proper conditions are being maintained.
In the last five years, the Alinha Institute has used the services of over 100 different workshops. However, since the launch of the Alinha Tag two months ago, they have been much more stringent upon whom they will purchase from and work with. Because the Alinha Tag goes on these products early in the manufacturing process, the company is greatly concerned about all steps in the manufacturing process.
This new blockchain platform will help the company to be able to monitor all aspects of the manufacturing, virtually from start to finish. The tag will be tracked each step, and this will allow monitors to be able to see that all workshop requirements are being met.
Dariele Jamile dos Santos, the founder of the Alinha Institute explained that the use of this technology makes sense because they allow for “transparency, decentralization and digital signatures” which improves the reliability.
While the technology will be used to monitor manufacturers, no description was provided as to what would occur should a company be found in violation. There was also no description of how the technology would be employed with manufacturers.
Microsoft has already been employing a new software program called Farmbeats in Brazil. According to the company, the software will use a variety of technologies, including blockchain, to monitor agricultural efficiency.
Explained Ranveer Chandra, the scientist who helped create Farmbeats, “Brazil is one of the first countries that comes to mind when we think of agriculture. We developed FarmBeats so that its technology could be applied here and in other developing countries.”
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