Expo West featured hundreds of new launches, with many committed to sustainable business practices. HowGood, an independent research company with a massive ingredient sustainability database, is providing the data needed by brands to meet sustainability goals and to avoid greenwashing.
Attendees got to see HowGood’s proprietary digital platform firsthand, which draws on more than 600+ independent data sources and certifications. The platform, called Latis, assesses the social and environmental impact of 33,000+ ingredients across eight sustainability metrics.
“It's basically a platform that brands across the food system and also other industries use to measure and improve and communicate sustainability. Brands are making green claims and if they want to prevent greenwashing, they have the data to back those claims. Otherwise, you're not creating a food system that actually rewards the companies that are doing the most. So when you have data-backed claims, you can understand where you are, you understand what you have to do to improve it and you can communicate to consumers, so that at the end, the brands that are doing the most can reap the rewards from it,” said João Brites, Director of Growth & Innovation, HowGood.
When it comes to gathering this data, Brites highlighted the importance of traceability.
“When you think of an ingredient like imagine corn, which goes into a lot of the ingredients and products here at Expo, the impact factors for that ingredient can vary 50-fold, depending on where it's grown, the production practice that was used, and so it all starts with traceability looking at where those ingredients are coming from, what were the agricultural practices that were used to grow those ingredients. Then based on that information, we have a database of 33,000 different ingredients.”
Brites said from there, HowGood is able to leverage its data to help brands understand their carbon footprint, water footprint, land use, labor risk and biodiversity.
With the FTC's Green Guides looking more closely at green marketing claims on products, Brites said HowGood is also providing the data needed by the brands to meet sustainability goals and avoid greenwashing.