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Navigating Supply Chain Traceability – Insights from PI Apparel Supply Chain Forum

Navigating Supply Chain Traceability – Insights from PI Apparel Supply Chain Forum

The recent PI Apparel Supply Chain Forum held in NYC brought together retailers, industry experts, and practitioners, emphasizing the critical theme of fashion and apparel supply chain traceability. Bamboo Rose team members, Jeff Fedor, Chief Product Officer and Annie Brown, Industry Consultant, led a thought-provoking discussion that shed light on the complexities and nuances surrounding this pressing issue. 



Unveiling ‌Complexity: Compliance, Traceability, and Transparency

The two-day event focused on all things ‌retail supply chain. Among key themes like sustainability, AI, and tech innovation, the biggest was retail supply chain traceability. We focused our Think Tank session, Embracing Digital Transformation in the Fashion Supply Chain, on this topic. The session kicked off with an engaging discussion, encouraging active participation and feedback from retail practitioners. The audience provided invaluable insights, reflecting the diverse perspectives within the industry.

Defining the Terms:

Jeff and Annie discussed the often blurred distinctions between compliance, traceability, and transparency. They elucidated that while compliance refers to meeting various requirements, traceability is about capturing accurate data throughout the supply chain. Transparency, however, takes a more granular approach, tracing products right down to specific origins.

Check out our blog post explaining these more in-depth

Bamboo Rose emphasizes a transparency-centric approach. Unraveling supply chain complexities requires starting with transparency as a foundation. Transparency focuses on the openness and accessibility of information regarding a company’s supply chain practices. It involves sharing comprehensive details with stakeholders to foster trust, accountability, and informed decision-making. We help future-forward retailers do this today. 

Perception Pulse: Insights from the Audience

During the session, we polled the audience on their opinions of these terms and how it impact their retail supply chains. The results show that there’s work to be done to improve traceability.  You can see all the results here:



Consumer-Centric Perspective

Shifting focus to consumer expectations, the conversation explored evolving consumer attitudes and preferences towards traceability. The panel acknowledged the increasing demand for transparent sourcing and the challenge of meeting these expectations while balancing ethical considerations and operational efficiencies.


Collaborating with Suppliers and Looking Ahead

The importance of collaboration with suppliers emerged as a critical point. While some retailers prefer a hands-off approach, the need for enhanced information exchange and ethical sourcing practices was underscored. The session culminated in discussions about the future, highlighting the burgeoning role of AI and the continuous pursuit of end-to-end solutions.


Closing Thoughts

The session not only addressed the challenges but also offered strategies to bridge the gap between industries. Drawing parallels with the food industry’s emphasis on transparency, the forum aimed to pave the way for the fashion and apparel sector to embark on a similar journey. Attendees gained valuable insights into navigating complexities, leveraging technology, and preparing for the future landscape of supply chain dynamics.

The PI Apparel Supply Chain Forum succeeded in providing a comprehensive understanding of the intricacies surrounding supply chain traceability, leaving attendees equipped with actionable insights to drive meaningful change in the industry.