Desk of Dr. James A. Hayward
Chairman, President & CEO of Applied DNA Sciences

So much has happened in such a short period of time.

Our community’s health, safety and welfare is, and always has been, at the heart of our company culture. Many of our employees have really taken this to heart and we have discovered that there is no limit to our creativity as we use the same hands and minds to make DNA as we do to sew masks for health workers, cooking meals for those less fortunate and pick up the phone to call a loved one.

We are most grateful that our staff at Applied DNA and their families remain vigilant in practicing social distancing, but more importantly, I am inspired by their commitment to continue to communicate, connecting with new and existing business colleagues, and sharing the power of DNA science and innovation.

In Stony Brook, the University has been an anchor for increased testing, and will continue to play a vital role as we continue to work toward flattening the curve and understanding more about the spread of COVID-19. I have been fortunate to have been a part of the Stony Brook research community for many years, and we continue to collaborate with many of our friends on campus and in the Renaissance Medical School and Hospital.

If you’re looking for a way to support Applied DNA’s research,
please contact Brian Viscount at

I am also very pleased to share with you that outside of Stony Brook, our sister laboratory in Ahmedebad, provided valuable laboratory materials to help with processing of testing in India. Thank you to the entire business and scientific teams in India for their continued support as we work together during these most uncertain times.

As over 180 countries have been impacted by COVID-19, the lockdown of many of our communities continues, and this has created massive disruption to ecosystems for production of our most basic needs, food, clothing, transportation and so forth. During this time of great uncertainty, the opportunity to take advantage of the situation is high. Reports of counterfeit N95 masks, anti-malarial drugs, and even PPEs, for example, has been reported in various national and global media outlets.

What is real and What is fake? The point is most of us unsuspecting consumers have no idea, and to take this further, the supply chain may also not be fully aware of what is actually happening in their supply chains. This disturbing fact has a direct impact on the food we eat, the clothing we wear, the cars we drive…in other words, consumers can and make a difference.

On this Earth Day, my message from my home to yours, is this…we focus on what we can change, and not on the things we cannot control. Change can bring new opportunities if we only look out for them, and be willing to share them with the world.

Stay safe, healthy and most of all, look after one another.

With warm appreciation

James A. Hayward
Chairman, President & CEO

Steve Birkhold on Post-COVID Sustainability

The Coronavirus pandemic has disrupted nearly every industry since its inception. In the wake of this crisis, the resulting dearth of protective equipment (especially masks) has caused textile brands in particular to switch gears. The response from the industry has been nothing short of inspirational. Luxury brands such as LVMH and Burberry have halted regular production and are focusing their resources on manufacturing critical PPE (personal protective equipment) such as hospital gowns and masks, both of which have been in extremely high demand as the crisis continues to grow.

On a smaller scale, but no less important, are the thousands of at-home seamstresses and local designers who have donated countless hours and materials in order to provide healthcare providers with these much-needed supplies.

As brands plan to reposition themselves post COVID-19, many are changing their priorities to reset their businesses and supply chains to reflect their new priorities, and new consumer demands. In addition to sustainable and ethically-produced products, consumers’ anxiety about product safety, authenticity and origin is at an all-time high.

Companies that had difficulties making these changes as normal course of business are being forced to make changes now anyway as government and industry requirements are changing. Sustainable materials, ethically-sourced materials, and also the origin of source materials are all a big priority.

The CertainT platform is an important factor in assuring these categories. Simply put, the platform allows for source materials to be tagged, tested and tracked as they travel through the supply chain, eliminating concerns such as product claims (100% Pima, post-consumer recycled, e.g.), as well as proof of product origin.

Masking the Source of Raw Materials in the Supply Chain

While the coronavirus is invisible, one of the most visible objects that is in our immediate consciousness is the “mask” – what kind of mask, how and when to wear it, and so forth. While there is much debate around the use of it (source Atlantic article below), not much is discussed about whether the masks themselves are made with authentic materials, especially if you are on the frontlines – in a hospital, pharmacy, or working in a supermarket. What is apparent with the advent of the coronavirus, is that supply chains that are not transparent could potentially be “masking” the source of the raw materials. Many materials such as cotton, viscose, recycled PET can be used to make many of the yarns and fabrics that could ultimately find their way into fabrics used for PPEs and masks.. so the need for proof that the product is (a) authentic (b) its from your supply chain (c) is verified becomes an essential part of the new normal.. the new processes, the new mindset of how raw materials are utilized.

LinkedIn Live with Beth Granger

“I was pleased to be live with my guests MeiLin Wan and Wayne Buchen. They both work for Applied DNA Sciences, an amazingly interesting company that has technology for certifying authenticity of products and tracking throughout the supply chain. (I hope I described that properly).

MeiLin provides clients with innovative molecular business solutions to preserve the integrity of products, assure quality and enable responsible and sustainable sourcing practices globally.”

Click for LinkedIn Live Replay

Have Something To Prove?
Why leather traceability is important to brands

The global leather supply chain is complex and challenging to brands who may wish to know the source of the materials used to make their products, and whether they are made ethically and responsibly. The ability to demonstrate true traceability enables brands to be transparent with customers that wish to understand where their products come from.

Having a means to prove that the product itself is authentic and traceable, helps brands to communicate and strengthens the trust in their brand and products.

Some of the questions facing brands in relation to global leather supply chains are:

1.    Environmental Impact

  • Has the land the animals are reared on been subject to deforestation?
  • Are the chemicals used during the processing of hides approved?
  • Are the tanneries that are processing your leather using environmentally friendly processes for dealing with chemicals and effluent discharge?
  • What is the carbon footprint of your leather?
2.    Animal Welfare
  • Which farm(s) reared the animals and are there any processes in place to ensure the well-being of animals
3.    Traceability
  • Can you or your supplier trace the animal from the farm to the slaughterhouse?
  • Can you or your supplier trace the hide from the slaughterhouse to the tannery?
  • Can you or your supplier trace split hides?
  • How do you know the tannery you contracted to process your leather actually processed your leather and that no substitution has taken place?
  • Can you or your supplier trace leather from one tannery to a separate finishing tannery?
  • Can you or your supplier trace your leather from a finishing tannery to a manufacturing facility (e.g. shoe, clothing, belt or bag manufacturer etc)?
  • Can you trace your finished goods from the manufacturing facility to your distribution chain?
  • Can you trace your goods from your distribution chain to retail outlets?
4.    Slavery and Child Labour
  • Has slavery and / or child labour been used at any time within the supply chain of your products?
5.    Provenance
  • How do you demonstrate that your goods are real and safe (not fakes)?

The above questions, and many more, are increasingly important to brands, their customers and other stakeholders; however the main question for brands is ‘CAN YOU PROVE IT?’

At Applied DNA Sciences we are not saying we can help brands answer all these questions however, within the leather supply chain our ‘CertainT’ platform can provide you with answers to all the questions and concerns above to enable you to ‘PROVE IT’.

We collaborate with brands and supply chain partners to enable them to better identify weak points in the supply chain, and in turn, address these questions and identify potential solutions to address some, if not all, of the questions above. Often, discussion about the supply chain process can provide smarter and simpler solutions that can help brands to “tick the box” with little to no disruption to their supply chains.

For leather, the CertainT platform begins with adding a unique DNA molecular tag into the final rinse of the wet blue / wet white process. A further tag may be added during finishing and if needed, different unique DNA molecular tags may be designated against a particular leather finishing plant or brand. Once added to the finish the DNA molecular tag persists through the remaining manufacturing processes, enabling testing throughout the supply chain all the way to the final product in a retail outlet. This allows tagging of 100% of the hide and as such any part of the hide can be checked using the portable SigNify test equipment within the supply chain. Training and certification on how to utilize the equipment is provided by Applied DNA.

After each test is completed and analysed, the data is uploaded into the Applied DNA CertainT portal which provides data feeds into clients’ IT and / or blockchain systems.

As a complement to physical traceability on the product itself, the CertainT platform can be used to secure labels or packaging. Applied DNA has printable solutions that can be used directly on labels or packaging. One of these solutions can be to use QR codes printed with a unique DNA molecular code on packaging to enable clients in retail outlets to scan the code so they may see information relating to the journey of their product. The benefit of DNA ink printed QR codes is to provide a linkage that enables the brand to identify the authenticity of the package as well as the product itself.

In uncertain times, CertainT provides Brands with Assurance:

  • Bulletproof Quality control
  • Supply Chain Track and Trace
  • Intellectual property protection

We invite you to contact our specialists to discover how CertainT is only a molecule away.

How Under Armour is making 100,000
masks a week to fight COVID-19

The company debuted an innovative “no-sew” design that cuts down on time and costs.


The athletic wear company Under Armour has unveiled an innovative new surgical mask that’s made of a single piece of fabric and doesn’t require any sewing. That means it can be produced rapidly in large quantities to meet the needs of medical workers on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis. Under Armour estimates it can manufacture 100,000 of these masks a week.

There is a global shortage of protective gear for healthcare workers. This problem is likely to be aggravated if the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention decides to reverse its previous stance and encourage the general population to wear masks in public. Hospitals have been putting out calls for masks, gowns, and other gear, and many apparel brands, including Rothy’s, American Giant, and Christian Siriano, have quickly shifted their production in response. Under Armour counts among them.

Read more at Fast Company

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