In April 2015, origin labelling became mandatory for fresh meat products in France.
Three years on, France’s Directorate-General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF) conducted an investigation into beef, sheep, pork, and poultry products in France, which has revealed more than 30% fail to comply with labelling and traceability requirements.
This article in New Food Magazine discusses how Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) and Whole Gene Sequencing (WGS) can assist in detecting and identifying contamination, and also playing an important role in assuring traceability of food products when combined with blockchain along the supply chain. Technology improvements have meant that NGS and WGS have high throughputs at much lower cost than before, and NGS machine can now be used for WGS as well.
The genomic information derived by these techniques on pathogenic bacterial contamination when combined with data such as the date and place of findings, can help track down the exact sources of contamination and therefore avoid large scale recalls of food products. The role of NGS in obtaining DNA traceability combined with blockchain permits products all the way along the supply chain to be traced back to their original raw materials whether that be plants or animals.
Today, amidst COVID-19 lockdown and growing pandemic, global food value chains stand disrupted across all commodities. Food safety has been a growing global concern that is only set to rise in this COVID world. It is in these times that it has become more imperative than ever, to ensure unadulterated and safe food across global food value chains.
Digitisation of such value chains towards making food safe, trackable and of desired consumer quality, needs to be accelerated and implemented at a much faster pace than ever.
SourceTrace is a globally leading name in traceability and has already implemented solutions across diverse sectors such as fruits and vegetables, organic cotton, vanilla, aquaculture, flavours and fragrances, spices, honey and more. Working across 28 countries since 2013, SourceTrace’s DATAGREEN platform helps companies track their produce from global locations across all stages while maintaining complete transparency and assurance of quality.
AgNext solves the problem of quality, bringing the best of the technology world for agribusinesses. Using state-of-art technologies in computer vision, spectroscopy and Internet-of-Things (IoT), AgNext has created the singular platform QUALIX, through which trade quality and safety parameters for multiple commodities could be assessed in a minute, enabling agribusinesses to leapfrog their procurement and operations processes, optimise costs, provide traceability, sharpen and smoothen blockchains and most importantly produce excellent products of highest quality for consumers and ensure fair-trade practices with farmers.
Helping businesses ensure the quality of food right from the farm-gates to the consumers, AgNext has partnered with key nodal institutions in multiple commodities and has also been working with leading corporates in each of the segments.
By combining their solutions and signing an MoU, AgNext and SourceTrace have created a technology platform, TraceNext, that can provide complete value chain traceability with an assurance of quality from the farm-gates to the consumer.
The benefits for such a platform as TraceNext, brings immense value to multiple commodity value chains, ensuring various aspects like
Trace food origin and chain of custody
Monitor ethical and sustainable practices used in growing food
Complete value chain traceability – from farm to consumer
Legal and compliance norms
Instant quality testing on trade and safety parameters
Instant trade decisions without any delays and dependencies
Ensure blockchain and fair-trade practices in commodity supply chains
The March 2020 Foods Journal has a special issue on “Food Authentication: Techniques, Trends and Emerging Approaches” consisting of 12 articles (11 original research articles and 1 review), which focus on the development and application of analytical techniques and emerging approaches in food authentication. The research papers cover the authentication of foods with high commercial value, such as olive oil, Iberian ham or fruits, among others. The review examines the potential of matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry (MALDI-MS) as a valuable technique to determine small metabolites in food tissue sections without requiring purification, extraction, separation or labelling. It can be used not only to identify the composition of foods, but also to investigate among other applications, their geographical origin for improved traceability, food safety and breed enhancement.
Tunisian company CHO, which is one of the largest olive oil producers in the southern Mediterranean has introduced blockchain technology to assure the integrity of its brand Terra Delyssa extra virgin olive oil. CHO is the latest major food company to join IBM’S Food Trust Network. The blockchain will track Terra Delyssa across eight quality assurance checkpoints, including the orchard where the olives were grown, the mill where olives were crushed, and the production facilities where the oil was filtered, bottled and distributed.
This review provides general information about olive oil and the possible causes of adulteration, mislabelling, counterfeiting, and fraud of the product. It reviews the possible adulterants in olive oil, the underlying causes of adulteration, and how to test for the presence of these adulterants. Data on trade and market dynamics are included. Also, the review focuses primarily on current deceptive practices in the global olive oil trade rather than historical adulterations.
The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation's (CSIRO) has published a Food and Agribusiness Roadmap to which identifies key growth areas for Australia's food exports.
The document was produced in collaboration with FIAL and names climate change, geopolitical instability and technological advances among the primary challenges facing Australian agribusinesses in the coming decades and warns that previous successes cannot be sustained through productivity improvements alone.
Five key growth enablers arose from industry consultation, each requiring a unique mix of science and technology investment, business action and ecosystem assistance:
1) Traceability and provenance
2 ) Food safety and biosecurity
3) Market intelligence and access
4) Collaboration and knowledge sharing
The report states that food fraud is estimated to cost around 40 billion U.S. dollars per year worldwide, with the United States (29.8%), China (13.6%) and India (12.6%) being the largest sources of fraudulent production. However, the report also highlights breakthroughs in tracking RFID chips, barcodes and QR codes in food labels and predicts that these will help address some of industry's concerns in traceability and provenance.
IBM is working towards the 2017 beta launch (the next stage after internal development) of a food-provenance service based on blockchain technology. An outline of its planned offering, which has yet to be formally launched, has emerged recently as a result of presentations by company executives at supply chain industry events. Dubbed simply "Food Safety Solution," the service, which should be available in beta at the end of this year, is targeting a wide range of entities that make up the food supply chain ecosystem, including growers, food processors and distributors, as well as logistics providers and retailers.
This short paper reviews food traceability in food supply chain. There are four parts in this paper, including driving factors for food traceability, challenges behind the implementation of food traceability systems, techniques applied for food traceability and application of food traceability systems.
N. Ireland Tech. Company Arc-Net is developing a blockchain technology to improve the traceability and authentication of food. Blockchain technology is a cloud-based platform that is designed to have high levels of security and flexibility, which protectively marks, authenticates and tracks foods across the whole supply chain. The company has received a £2 million investment to develop the technology.