Over the last four years eCOPS, LLC was designated by the USDA as an official "Provider" of electronic documents for the coffee, cocoa and orange juice industries. In becoming an officially sanctioned provider of warehouse receipts, eCOPS addresses the new "Food Security" rules from U.S. Customs and the FDA.
Current eCOPS Users
- 17 Banks globally located
- 54 Clearing Members
- 140 Dealers globally located
- 80 Graders
- 7 Land Carriers
- 97 Samplers globally located
- 65 Warehouses globally located
- 57 Weighers globally located
eCOPS, LLC Management
Terrance Martell, Vice Chairman
Benjamin R. Jackson, President and COO, ICE Futures U.S., Inc.
Brandon Zhu, Sr. Java Developer, eCOPS Systems
What Does eCOPS Do?
Procedurally, the physical delivery of commodities requires valid ownership records to convey the title of the commodity from the seller to the buyer. The central document necessary to accomplish transfer of ownership is the Warehouse Receipt. Recent reforms to legislation have permitted Warehouse Receipts to be issued in electronic form. In 2003, eCOPS, LLC was approved by the USDA as an authorized purveyor of Electronic Warehouse Receipts ("EWRs") under the Warehouse Act of 2000. eCOPS is a secure system that is subject to ongoing audits from the USDA.
eCOPS provides a capability to create, modify and view EWRs. EWRs created on eCOPS register the ownership of physical commodity stocks in accordance with Federal regulations and they are legally-recognized negotiable financial instruments evidencing ownership of physical commodities. EWRs replace the paper documents that are used to collateralize loans or transfer title of the physical commodity in exchange for payment.
eCOPS further streamlines the handling of physical commodities during storage and delivery by providing the capability to create electronic documents for invoices, shipping, weighing, sampling, and grading. All these functions are made available with substantial savings of the administrative costs of manual paper handling while minimizing the incident of error.
Essentially, eCOPS acts as an electronic interchange and central repository for all documents and data entered by the registered users. Through its system of internal computerized protocols, eCOPS automatically routes each document and corresponding events to all corresponding recipients immediately upon creation or modification of the documents. Authorization to issue, view, or make changes to documents in eCOPS is based on the Users assigned role(s). Assigned roles entitle users to access the documents in which they are involved in some pre-defined capacity.
eCOPS employs the latest Internet technology and is designed to interface with other web-based service providers.
eCOPS presently provides the electronic document management capabilities for coffee and cocoa commodities. Provisions for other warehoused commodities are planned for future eCOPS releases.
The History of eCOPS, LLC
ICE Futures U.S. has a long history of establishing standards for operations in the commodities industry. As far back as 1870, ICE Futures U.S. predecessors, the Coffee, Sugar & Cocoa Exchange and the New York Cotton Exchange, developed and maintained standards for samplers, weighers, graders and warehouses for coffee, cocoa and cotton that is delivered on the exchange. All these service providers are licensed by the Exchange, which monitors and enforces the rules and standards in place for the respective industry. ICE Futures U.S. continues as a service provider to these industries.
In 1990, available technology was able to take the exchange delivery from a labor intensive cumbersome and error-prone, paper-based, manual process into an automated system that transformed the delivery process. The next generation of technology took a closed, proprietary system and opened it into an easily accessible system that provides expanded service to more users, more quickly and at a lower cost.
The original Commodity Operations Processing System ("COPS") joined together all the companies involved in exchange cocoa and coffee deliveries in one system. eCOPS allows these same companies, as well as a much broader constituency, to use the Internet to document the delivery process. The great strength of eCOPS comes from the fact that it came from a system that repeatedly has proven its value and reliability to the coffee and cocoa industries.
The eCOPS platform is built on the latest technology and works to establish standards in service, licensing, electronic data stream and documentation beginning with the coffee and cocoa industries. The system is designed to provide the same high level of reliability and trust for the handling, grading, storage, transfer and the documentation that is at the center of the entire exchange futures and commercial delivery process.
Over the last four years eCOPS, LLC was designated by the USDA as an official "Provider" of electronic documents for the coffee, cocoa and orange juice industries. In becoming an officially sanctioned provider of electronic warehouse receipts, eCOPS addresses the new "Food Security" rules from U.S. Customs and the FDA. This type of security assures eCOPS users that their commodity is being handled properly, using the most efficient technology available to the industry.
eCOPS offers complete standard electronic documentation for all coffee and cocoa deliveries. These documents and transfer procedures were based on the standards set by the Green Coffee Association and the National Coffee Association in the case of coffee, and the Cocoa Merchants Association of America in the case of cocoa.
eCOPS strives to provide equal access to the tools that will help increase the efficiency and profitability for all segments of the supply chain in an industry. For example, the availability of this web-based delivery system initially helped to strengthen the "middle market" for coffee, supporting greater competition among buyers and sellers and allowing the streamlined movement of coffee through a more efficient pipeline. The cash market and the futures market both thrive when more buyers and sellers come together to create greater liquidity. eCOPS can help to support a healthier, more competitive cash market as it enhances the delivery process for exchange certified coffee and cocoa.
As other commodities move toward electronic documentation, those industries will be able to turn to eCOPS to secure the services now being used by the coffee and cocoa industries.