9.3. Food & Beverage Traceability with 4.0 Technologies

Traceability is the ability to locate an animal, commodity, food product or ingredient and to follow its history in the supply chain forward (from source to consumer) or backwards (from consumer to source) by recoding the process. This particular process becomes very costly and complex with the integration of 4.0 technologies. The complexity can be linked to the unique characteristics of the food materials that undergo a transformation from the bulk raw material to individual food products in the manufacturing processes. Another challenge is that the food processes are majorly operated by humans which can be difficult to monitor. Quick Response (QR) code and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) have been adopted in food supply chain as to automate the identification and tracking of food.

An example of RFID application is for meat. The system records the complete chain from the farm, to the slaughterhouse, to the processing factory to the retailer. The traceability data is gathered and registered through RFID readers, and sent to the central database. At specific places, there are devices where a consumer can read data from the central database and get the required information about the meat. Other foods that have been applied with RFID system are dairy, bakery, beverages, sushi, pasta and coffee.

Some of the information on these products can be read by using the RFID readers provided by the resellers and/or retailers, by the web (browser personal computer) and smartphone applications (APP) when the RFID tag code is inserted. A less expensive alternative for the traceability of products is the QR code system, where consumers can acquire information related to their food by scanning the code. This can also be done by using a reader application installed on the smartphones.



For further reading: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/333062733_Short_review_Application_Areas_of_Industry_40_Technologies_in_Food_Processing_Sector

Additional Task: https://h5p.org/node/731028