The Importance of Traceability in the Modern Counterfeit Market

22nd March, 2019

The counterfeit market isn’t just about designer goods anymore. According to the Global Brand Counterfeiting Report, the modern counterfeit product industry was worth around £910 billion in 2017 and contains everything from counterfeit wine through to medicines. This equates to 2.5% of world trade according to research by the EU and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Thanks to the internet, those operating in the counterfeit market have access to more data and more opportunities to advertise before authorities can catch them. For consumers, websites such as The Counterfeit Report can help identify legitimate products before they purchase. Websites such as Amazon and eBay also offer buyer protection should they become victim to counterfeit products.

What can manufacturers do to help tackle the counterfeit goods market?

Think back to the Horsemeat scandal of 2013; the UK introduced the National Food Crime Unit (NFCU) to work with partners to protect consumers from serious food and drink criminal activity.

It’s all about traceability. Traceability is significantly important to everyone involved in the manufacturing and distribution of food products and services. If consumers, crime units and distributors are able to use coding and marking technology to trace the source of a product – not only does it potentially save money, but also your reputation.

Barcodes are already the worldwide unique labelling identification system. More recently, QR Code (also known as data matrix codes) printing can be used on both primary and secondary packaging to help direct those in the distribution chain to the relevant authenticity checks and information required.

QR Codes are an ideal solution to help provide as much information on a product as possible, the complex codes are hard to replicate and can help counteract the criminal activity.

If you’d like to find out more about protecting your manufactured products from counterfeits or would like more information on the latest coding and marking technology, contact Clearmark Solutions on and one of our coding experts will be in touch to discuss your requirements.

You can also download our Blockchain Guide which covers traceability in more detail and our Barcode Guide which demonstrates how you can protect yourself from counterfeiters.

If you are interested in pharmaceutical coding you can download our guide which specifically covers traceability within the industry.

Building supplier trust: Print and apply labelling for food manufacturers
Vulcan at AB World Foods Pataks 24 11 14 min

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