Varcode to Work with Avery Dennison on a Cold Chain Tracking Application


Varcode’s variable barcode records temperature and time out-of-compliance for pharma and perishables

At the beginning of this year, labeling giant Avery Dennison announced a competition for new technologies to enhance consumer and supply chain performance with software or product-identification technologies. Now, Varcode, a developer of digital collection, recording, tracing, and reporting solutions for supply chain compliance and monitoring, has announced that it is one of nine companies (out of over 200) to be in the first “cohort” under the AD Stretch program. (A venture firm, Highline Beta, is also sponsoring AD Stretch.) Each of the winners will partner with AD to run a pilot in the next several months to demonstrate their technology.

Dan Bogar, chief revenue officer at Varcode, says that its Smart Tag technology “sits in the middle” between low-cost chemical indicators that give a yes/no answer to temperature excursions of cold chain shipments, and higher-cost dataloggers that record time and temperature along a delivery route. The Smart Tag is a “dynamic” linear barcode label those elements record the extent and duration of a temperature excursion; the results can be read with most scanners or smartphones, and then transmitted to a cloud-based data-management system. The company currently produces 500K labels/month in Israel, and will be opening comparable capacity in the US in 2023. 

Numerous observers in cold chain monitoring, as well as those involved in the massive effort to put barcodes on each unit of sale of pharmaceuticals in the US, under the 2013 Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA), and elsewhere in the world, have noted the commonality of this track-and-trace technology with cold chain tracking. Bogar says that while Varcode’s label is not designed for DSCSA compliance, it would be a relatively straightforward process to include a 2D DSCSA barcode along with the Varcode barcode. 

Results from the Varcode AD Stretch program are expected next year.

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