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Technology and Food Monitoring

Can technology help improve food security?

Technological progress, particularly in remote monitoring, data logging and analysis, offers real solutions in the reduction of food risks in the agri-food industry, which is becoming more and more complex.

Modern food security plans need to focus on risk reduction across the entire supply chain. Establishing points and control measures that minimize these risks is essential for food security.

However, the ability to evaluate supply chains across multiple locations and countries is becoming increasingly difficult to manage. Without this ability to evaluate multiple supply chains of the same product, ensuring food security is virtually impossible.

This is where emerging food monitoring technologies can really help.

Emerging technologies for food security

Today, innovative technologies can deliver information that enables companies to identify trends and potential weaknesses. They help companies take a more proactive approach to food security directly from the supply chain.

These connected technologies provide 24/7 monitoring to enable active risk management by identifying them earlier.

Food monitoring technologies can help solve risks in a faster and more efficient way, reducing the enormous costs of unidentified risks. For example:

A 24/7, pest-proof surveillance system that addresses a nuisance problem before a larger scale infestation takes place.

Hygienic sensors with remote sensing in toilets that allows to know if the employees wash their hands, in order to identify and change the bad habits

That being said, being in possession of technology is one thing. Knowing how and where to use it is another problem.

Some Apps that helps in Food Monitoring

Paying attention to what you eat and watching the labels of the products you buy to know the composition has become a reflex for a large number of consumers. But in the jungle of additives and other conservatives with barbaric names, it is more and more difficult to know what we really eat every day.

To try to find you and help you make better choices, it is possible to be assisted by applications that, by simply scanning the barcode of a product, are able to decipher for you their composition and display the nutritional information. If you remain perfectly free to choose what you eat, these free apps have at least the power to break some common misconceptions and may open your eyes to more harmful products than you could imagine.

Open Food Facts

Open Food Facts is the official application of the Collaborative Food Database Project. Official Content Reference – Most industry applications are based on Open Food Facts – it relies on open data added, enriched and constantly updated by thousands of users. The application lists just over 210,000 products.

If this substantial knowledge base is essential for the proper functioning of most applications of the genre, it sins by its austere interface or outdated in the face of what the competition can offer. To test your food, Open Food Facts offers to scan the barcode of the product or to launch a request manually in the dedicated search engine.

The product information sheets include general characteristics, ingredients, nutritional information and a photo. When available, the application displays the Nutri-score and indicates the nutritional markers for 100g, all accompanied by a light color code ranging from green, when the harmful element is present in small quantities, to red, when the quantity is too high.

Scan Eat

Also based on the huge database of Open Food Facts, Scan Eat analyzes your food and provides for each food tested a Nutriscore, a note combined with a color ranging from A (green) to E (red) depending on nutritional qualities of the product.

To help you choose your food, Scan Eat offers two options. The first, classic, allows to test the products and to display the Nutriscore accompanied by the descriptive sheet by simply scanning the barcode. The second, further, allows to manually search for a product corresponding to a particular regime. To do this, go to the section “Explorer” where it is possible to prefilter the search results to display only foods with a certain Nutriscore, with a particular label (organic, produced in Britain, origin France guaranteed , Red Label, Sustainable Fishing MSC, etc.) or excluding certain allergens and additives.

The Scan Eat history logs only those foods whose barcode you have scanned and can be emptied at any time. The application does not require any connection. The scan history is only kept locally on your device. The products you want to keep the information can be added to a favorites list. In addition, thematic lists of foods can be created but do not allow a search based on a Nutriscore. Finally, Scan Eat offers a section dedicated to research trends (the most scanned products, drinks, chocolate, the selection of the team) but whose interest is, for now, quite difficult to grasp.

Is My Food Good

Like Scan Eat, Is My Food Good is based on the database of Open Food Facts and offers for each scanned product, a Nutriscore ranging from A to E associated with a color code ranging from green to red.

Each product analyzed by the application has a description sheet as well as a table containing Nutriscore, nutritional benchmarks, as well as the list of ingredients used in its composition. The color code used on the cards is clear and makes it possible to understand immediately whether the food analyzed is healthy or not. In addition, items that may represent a risk such as sugar or fat are displayed in red when their quantity per 100 grams is too high.

Is My Food Good also allows you to create product lists, but also to add your favorites to your favorites to find them more easily. If the application does not oblige the user to create an account and to connect to it to use it, the connection is however essential if you wish to preserve a history of your searches. Finally, to keep an eye on the state of your consumption, Is My Food Good generates a graph summarizing the distribution of the products you consume according to their Nutriscore.

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