New software platform aims to transform packaging data management

A new cloud-based software solution, GING, has been released to support businesses in simplifying the capture, sharing and reporting of packaging data throughout the whole supply chain.

Packaging dataBuilt around the Open 3P data standard for the packaging sector – launched earlier this year – GING enables businesses to share precise and timely packaging data with their supply chains, both domestic and international, allowing access to better quality data whenever necessary.

Both the Open 3P data standard and GING have been developed alongside a consortium of partners from the packaging industry and funding from the UK Research & Innovation’s Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging (SSPP) Challenge, delivered by Innovate UK. Partners include Dsposal, Ecosurety, RECOUP, Open Data Manchester and OPRL.

The platform also enables integration with a variety of data services and software, allowing business to optimise their existing software systems, removing the need for manual data transfer and minimising the potential for associated errors.

To ensure security, the platform’s users will also be able to protect commercially sensitive or proprietary data, permitting total control over what data is shared and what isn’t.

The new platform arrives at a critical time for the UK packaging sector with the incoming Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) and Plastic Packaging Tax imposing more stringent data capture and reporting requirements.

Commenting on the release of the new platform, Sophie Walker, CEO and Co-founder of Dsposal and lead partner in the development of GING said: “By replacing what are often inefficient, time-consuming and ad hoc ways of collating and sharing packaging data – often in multiple different formats – GING offers direct commercial benefits, as well as wider industry benefits.

“It supports more efficient and cost-effective data collection and sharing, smarter internal reporting and decision making, and the opportunity to create a body of aggregated and anonymised data that can inform the drive for greater resource efficiency, circularity and net zero across the whole packaging supply chain.”

Increasing transparency in packaging data

A new not-for-profit entity has been created to run GING. The company functions as a limited guarantee entity with measures like an asset and profit lock, along with a well-defined and safeguarded mission statement. The performance of the company in alignment with its mission will be monitored by the newly appointed ‘Mission Guardians’, who also possess specific veto powers.

The ‘Mission Guardians’ – that include high-profile names such as Paula Chin, Senior Policy Advisor at WWF and Professor Michael Shaver, Director of Sustainable Futures at the University of Manchester – have been appointed with the role of safeguarding GING’s mission to “improve the quality and availability of packaging data for the entire packaging ecosystem for the benefit of people and planet”.

Commenting on the need for transparency in the packaging industry, Professor Michael Shaver said: “Transparency is essential to ensuring the best fate for our packaging waste. It unlocks better economic, social and environmental outcomes and is thus the foundation for a sustainable future. I am excited to serve as a Mission Guardian on the GING project.”

Paula Chin added: “Adopting a common approach to understanding the footprint of packaging material supply chains is critical if we want to reduce our global environmental and social impacts.

“Enabling more transparent and comprehensive reporting is an essential step towards this and platforms like GING’s Open 3P are poised to drive improvements in this area. It is a privilege to be a Mission Guardian and I look forward to supporting this transformational work.”

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