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Food Traceability

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(Sea Food at Pedra Alta Champs Elysees - Hsi-Pin Ma)

Food Traceability: from Farm to Smarphone to Table



It is part of a growing cohort of consumers who want to be able to trace the sources of the food they feed their families all the way back to the farm. Traceability - the ability to see where food comes from, what it’s made with, and by whom - is one of the most important food and drink trends these days. Current and emerging technology may actually make it possible to trace produce at a level of detail and accuracy far beyond what we’re capable of today. 

"The robotics, mobile computing and networks of the Internet of Things (IoT) will ultimately allow us to collect and tie together data throughout the supply chain. All the food we buy would have a transparent set of interconnected tech-enabled checkpoints that consumers could gain insight into. Ideally, each individual unit of produce harvested would be assigned traceable data points indicating the farm and location, a lot number to show the specific field where it was grown, the date of harvest, the workers who harvested it, the date and location where it was packed, the workers who packed, to whom the lot was sold, how and by whom it was transported, the temperature and humidity conditions under which it was transported, and how and to whom the produce was distributed. Did that particular head of broccoli get sent directly to a supermarket, or to a distribution center, where more people handled it?" -- [CORTEVA Agriscience]  

The question then arises: with whom is all this data entrusted? In fact, the distributed ledger system used to power bitcoin, called blockchain, may be the answer. A number of agricultural companies are working to engage a variety of partners in the food and agriculture industry to better leverage blockchain for their customers’ benefit. This technology provides a token at the point of food creation and follows it all the way through to the final consumer selling point. By the time a consumer picks up the item in a grocery store, it comes complete with a detailed story—from farm to table. 


[More to come ...]

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