Blockchain-based Supply Chain Traceability

Is your company importing, processing, or using Tin, Tungsten, Tantalum, Gold, or Cobalt in your products? Then do not hesitate to get in touch with us!

SustainBlock is a blockchain-based project to demonstrate supply chain accountability from ASM mine sites all the way to mineral and metal end-users, and in turn provide downstream companies with access to information on the provenance of minerals contained in their products.

Project Description

Executive Summary

The goal of this project is to create a Blockchain-based system for tracing certain raw materials from conflict-affected and high-risk areas – so-called Conflict Minerals or 3TG – across the entire supply chain via verified, cryptographically secured transactions. The project will be piloted on such a mineral from mines in the African Great Lake Region and will run until May 2019.

Traceability from Mine to Store

Together with its partners, iPoint will establish a traceability process from mine to store, thereby demonstrating end users’ accountability for the upstream due diligence process. By doing so, blockchain-based traceability and data reporting onto a decentralised network will be used, providing downstream supply chain participants and end-users access to reliable and verified information on all relevant stages of the supply chain.


Project Pilot: Minerals in the African Great Lakes Region

The project will be piloted on minerals in the African Great Lakes Region and will run until May 2019. A prototype set of systems will be developed and applied to a pilot mineral supply chain of tungsten including all relevant supply chain economic operators, such as the mining community, exporter, participating trader, smelter, and manufacturing companies. Creating an eco-system based on the blockchain technology enables companies to mutually verify if the sourced minerals or metals have a proven provenance, and helps increase the demand for minerals and metals that are responsibly sourced from confl ict-affected and high-risk areas (CAHRAs) across all stages of the supply chain. This means that the origin of the sourced material is ensured due to verifi ed transactions along the supply chain.


Project Duration

February 2018 - May 2019

General Objectives


This project will establish a proof-of-concept, fully verified supply chain, demonstrate the operability of the blockchain technology in the context of responsible minerals determination, and ascertain the acceptance of data at all levels of the supply chain all the way to participating end-users.


Long Term Objective


The long-term objective of the project is to establish a self-sustained, openly accessible supply chain traceability regime which offers a cost-effective way to effectively trace mineral supply chains, verify the evolution of commodity procurement practices in real-time, and incentivise end-user engagement towards the improvement of upstream circumstances, particularly in the gold and 3T mining sectors.

Project Funding
EPRM – European Partnership for Responsible Minerals

The SustainBlock project is funded by the European Partnership for Responsible Minerals (EPRM).


Project Partners
iPoint-systems gmbh

iPoint, Project Lead
iPoint is a leading provider of software and consulting for environmental and social product compliance, and sustainability. 50.000 companies around the globe rely on iPoint for managing, tracking, analyzing, and reporting data across the whole value creation network. iPoint’s solutions support you in meeting and staying one step ahead of regulations and requirements such as REACH, RoHS, CSR, Conflict Minerals- and Anti-Slavery-related laws, as well as other emerging trends.


BetterChain, Project Partner
BetterChain curates a framework to involve mineral endusers in the resolution of ASM challenges, including sustainable funding of upstream due diligence efforts by consumer-facing brands. The framework comprises open-source data reporting tools, an accountability mechanism for endusers, and a reward model to turn locally-generated data into a valuable asset to incentivize transparent reporting. In the SustainBlock piloting context, local due diligence data consists of Better Sourcing validation, and at scale will provide a monetisation solution for independent sources.

Call for Participation

We are still looking for companies to join us in the pilot project. Is your company importing, processing, or using Tin, Tungsten, Tantalum, Gold, or Cobalt in your products? Then do not hesitate to get in touch with us: