Avery Dennison Corporation today announced the launch of a new digital venture of a connected product Cloud that can bridges physical and digital aspect of products.

This system, termed atma.io is an end-to-end platform capable of creating, assigning and managing unique digital identities for literally any physical item. This platform aims to address the challenge of supply chain management and product management teams having to track and manage multiple digital based triggers for identity and tracking of product movement. Currently, the platform reportedly manages over 10 billion unique items and is adding upwards of over 50 connected products every second.

Avery Dennison atma.io

This effort is the expression of an Intelligent Labels vision, a Cloud platform that can assign unique digital identifiers to everyday product items to address specific business use case needs among industry product demand and supply networks.

Supply Chain Matters had the opportunity to speak with Max Winograd, Vice President, Connected Products for Avery Dennison, as well as co-founder of atma.io. He noted that this Cloud platform was designed to be open, easily integrated and highly scalable.  The platform can leverage various triggers related to product movement, such as UHF RFID, NFC, smart codes or QR Codes.

 

A series of business use cases or modules are available for use by businesses and industry supply chains. They include:

  • Product Authentication or Anti Grey Market- to alert for counterfeit products or identify product flows or production interaction among distribution channels.
  • Consumer products interaction,- where products can be enabled with personalization or use depending on the consumer segment. The platform identifies points of consumer usage.
  • Circularity of supply networks- that empowers consumers with the ability to return products after use or verify actual identity and origins of a product.
  • Product birth certificate- which establishes where a product was produced, how it was produced and its item level traceability among tiers of supply or channel demand networks. This can include the ability to reportedly connect digital triggers, or alert when conditions related to a product have changed based on inputted thresholds such as temperature or condition.

Regarding our specific question as to what specific industry segments have had the most uptake thus far, Winograd pointed to three:

Apparel and Retail, and specifically Adidas, which is cited in the press release for use in circularity and unique consumer-product interactions. The termed Infinite Play initiative to be able to buy back products and give them a second life and enhance overall sustainability efforts.

The food segment with interest coming from top quick serve restaurant brands in tracing products among tiers of the food supply network and assuring food freshness.

Pharmaceutical and healthcare supply chains to include the tracing of authentication and environmental conditions and COVID-19 vaccine distribution along with origin and distribution of testing kits. Interest has also come from needs for pharmaceutical and medicine item level traceability leading up to the 2023 mandates for such traceability.

 

Supply Chain Matters Added Perspective

Since 2013, Supply Chain Matters has highlighted for readers technology advances in item-level tracking, smart labeling and printed electronics. Readers can search our content library under the term: “item level tracking.”

This has included General Electric’s Internet of Things (IoT) enabled “Industrial Internet,” integrated printed labels with embedded circuitry to identify products, And IBM’s efforts to leverage blockchain technology to improve the tracking and tracing of the origins and conditions of food products. This has further included offerings of combination sensor hardware and Cloud-based software capability that can leverage IoT and blockchain enabled technology for both item-level tracking and environmental monitoring.

Today’s announcement of Avery atma.io adds a new dimension of approach, a multi-year development effort of a universal connected product Cloud that could lead to the future of what can become digitally connected products.

Indeed, technology advances and approaches continue, and so are the possibilities of ushering new Cloud based capabilities for product demand and supply network product identification and movement.

Bob Ferrari

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