STAND Up!: Retexcycle, winner of the eco-innovative challenge in the supply chain traceability of Spanish Merino wool


The innovative solution launched by the Barcelona-based start-up, Retexcycle, has been selected to solve the challenge about the supply chain traceability of the Spanish Merino wool. This challenge was posted in The Switchers Open Eco-Innovation platform in the month of July, under the EU-funded STAND Up! project.

This challenge was launched by Holistex and Textil Olius companies through the online platform for green and sustainable solutions to challenges facing both public and private sector in the textile, fashion and clothing industry. Under the supervision of TEXFOR and Medwaves, the platform puts companies in the textile value chain in contact with entrepreneurs and innovative start-ups, consisting of finding an integrated, digitized and low-cost solution to ensure the traceability of Spanish Merino wool in each and every one of the steps of the textile value chain.

Retexcycle's solution, winner of the challenge, consists of developing a chip with a unique engraved QR code that will be implanted in Merino sheep. Currently, they are investigating different materials such as polyamide or another polymer. The system will have a secret tracer, which makes each stamp unique and uncopiable. By reading the QR code with their smartphone app, the animal can be constantly geolocated.

This technology has been designed to carry out an exhaustive follow-up of the traceability of products. According to Retexcycle, “at the time of shearing the sheep, the system will create a geolocated batch of raw material with a time stamp for each animal that will allow the wool to be tracked throughout the entire value chain through certificates of mass balanced transaction”. The company explains that this system is already being used to track the traceability of cotton "from seed to garment, with excellent results."

The prize for having won the eco-innovative challenge is a voucher of €20,000 that will be used to develop the proposed idea and implement it.