Anyone who runs a business that sells physical goods will doubtless be tied into the complex web of the global supply chain.
Business owners also know that figuring out the sources for the materials used in their products can be incredibly difficult, or even impossible, to discover.
The Supply Chain Makes It Hard to Find a Material’s Source
This is because it is often the case that countless materials are made to make the materials that make your products. When someone asks you where your woven shirt’s material was sourced from, it is a question that is actually quite hard to answer.
You will of course know who your suppliers are, and perhaps even your suppliers’ suppliers.
But try going further behind that, and it can be more and more difficult.
However, recent advances in artificial intelligence, along with other areas of technology, are going to make it easier to find out where materials are sourced.
Why Every Business Needs to Worry About Source Materials
The unfortunate truth is that some businesses simply do not care if child labor, forced adult labor, or harsh low-paying working conditions are used to source materials. The “out of sight, out of mind” attitude makes it easy to turn a blind eye to exploitation.
This is why the United States government recently passed laws that will come down hard on businesses that use materials from exploitative conditions.
The New York Times reports that companies in the United States are now required to prove that what they sell was not made using forced labor.
Historically, businesses have been able to get out of trouble through plausible deniability, because of the aforementioned complexity of the global supply chain.
But one of the reasons that U.S. businesses are required to prove no exploitation went into the production of goods is that technology is being developed that makes it easier to do so.
That same New York Times article cited above mentions a new technique that is in place: spraying goods with DNA “codes” that can be quickly checked to confirm whether the goods are okay to sell.
Such goods will be sprayed with a DNA mist that would be otherwise missing, or just different from, what is one the goods shipped from places using forced labor.
AI Technology for Tracking Materials
Beyond DNA detection, AI will also be able to analyze supply chains to better track materials’ journey.
AI can quickly be applied to figure out if a business is in line with labor regulations, or has been sourcing from anywhere that is known or suspected to be using forced labor.
This is done by gathering data about the many sources known in the supply chain, and finding the many complex connections between those sources and suppliers.
The supply chain will always remain a complex web, but the great thing about AI is that it is the technology that will be able to analyze the many threads and connections across that thread. This way, businesses will be better-equipped to handle supply chain regulations.
Want to Use AI for Your Business? Let’s GO.
With ChatGPT, artificial intelligence finally had its “iPhone moment”.
Like smartphones, which were once a niche technology, AI is slowly becoming universally recognized as one of the most important and life-changing technologies of our era.
There are many business owners out there wondering how they can take advantage of AI. What they may not know is that plenty of businesses, including their competitors, are already using AI.
Right now, the technology is available to business owners. They just need to know where to look.
Guardian Owl Digital has a proven track record of working with businesses through its AI and machine learning initiative, GO AI.
This includes TouchUp, which will tell you how your customers will receive your creative marketing materials.
Predict+ offers up to 99% accurate predictions for important data such as customer churn rates or the prices of materials you order for your operations.
Persona modeling offers you key cognitive insights into your customer base, enabling you to improve your marketing and customer outreach efforts based on what your customers care about.
And that is just a few of the AI and machine learning solutions that we offer.
From finance to manufacturing to healthcare and beyond, any and every industry, and businesses of all sizes, can benefit from our affordable AI solutions.
So, what are you waiting for? GO AI today to grow your business.
Previous GO AI Articles
For continuing your AI education and keeping up with the latest in the world of AI, check out our AI blog: