Sourcemap: Going Beyond "Made in China"

Sourcemap: Going Beyond "Made in China"

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Anjali Prasertong
Mar 18, 2011

Ever look at a can of Coca-Cola and wonder where all its ingredients came from and how far they traveled to get to you? With Sourcemap.org, an open source website that maps supply chains, you can find out the answers.

Can you guess which ingredient comes from Colombia?

Caffeine! A can of Coke made in Atlanta also includes aluminum from Canada, epoxy resin from Hong Kong and corn syrup from Iowa, along with several ingredients manufactured in Atlanta. In total, the components travel over 21,000 kilometers before ending up on supermarket shelves. Pretty mind-boggling.

The site generates a Quick Response (QR) barcode sticker that can be stuck to the product and scanned by cell phones or other mobile devices. Site co-founder Leonardo Bonanni hopes this will empower consumers:

"We see that down the road you won't just see a label on a product that says 'green' or 'made in China' because these are meaningless things," Bonanni said. "You'll see a Sourcemap QR code that's going to tell the entire story of the product."

Check it out:
Can of Coca Cola Made in Atlanta - Sourcemap.org
Know Your Source - Public Radio Kitchen

What do you think? Are you curious to know the full story behind the products you buy?

Related: Smart Shopping: What to Look For on an Ingredient List

(Image: Sourcemap)

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