How is technology shaping the food supply chain?

How is technology shaping the food supply chain?

By Navneeta Kaul

Our growing world population needs a consistent supply of food. To cope with the growing population, the world must increase agricultural production by 70%. Food supply logistics − services, information and infrastructure that allows for a movement of food items − is now recognized as a driver of the world economy.

Adapting to new economic realities

Europe and Asia are emerging as new exporters of food in the world. Developing countries that were traditionally agrarian are seeing a shift in labor force into service jobs. This is leading to an increase in labor cost, causing an increase in food prices. To maintain a competitive edge, companies need to adapt to changes rapidly. Not only do exporters need to identify new routes and partners, they need to deliver products reliably at affordable prices with minimal spoilage. Companies are using new technology to deliver food in a safe, efficient and reliable manner. Here, we highlight how technology is transforming food supply.

Infratab Freshtime technology: How fresh is it?

Everyday, we lose valuable food items in the supply chain using conventional tools. Using real-time sensing technology, we can ensure proper management of temperature-sensitive food items.

Infratab, Inc is a private company that manufactures and sells smart sensors and software to enable testing of the product. Infratab’s Freshtime technology platform is one of the most powerful metrics on the market to measure the freshness of a perishable. These metrics have been properly reviewed, confirmed and certified. All the features of Freshtime enable the company to test, fine-tune and assess the freshness and temperature of perishables. Freshtime Points provides a win-win situation for both the consumer and the brand.

Consumers benefit by using food items with an increased shelf life and with little wastage. By combining the information, analytics, and knowledge by Freshtime, companies benefit by making the best decisions for perishables.

SureCheck Technology: For sure checks food quality

A lot of restaurants and grocery chains follow Hazard Analysis & Critical Control Points (HACCP) programs to keep food-borne diseases (FBD) at bay. However, the rate of FBD incidence is higher in the world due to poor implementation and limited application of HACCP in small companies.

PAR has utilized an intuitive IoT (Internet of Things) cloud-based system to develop a 5″ mobile, hand-held device to check the quality of food items. It replaces paper-based, time-consuming and imprecise methods to store, filter and analyze data in real-time.Combined with the benefit of accessibility, it provides a far more advanced monitoring of temperature and delivers benefits to restaurants, grocery chains, and food-related businesses. PAR SureCheck Advantage is equipped with:

  • An integrated temperature probe
  • A RFID infrared temperature reader
  • A barcode scanner

The Probe and RFID reader assures the quality and temperature of delivered food items under FDA regulations.

Roambee’s devices: End to end monitoring services

Roambee’s devices also enable companies to make informed decisions based on data from real-time locations and monitoring. Roambee’s monitoring services use portable wireless-tracking devices called “Bees”. Bees easily attach to cargoes and send real-time data to Roambee’s cloud-based Honeycomb platform.By transmitting data from individual packages, items, vehicles, and fleets, Bees provide real-time visibility for the items in storage or in-transit.

360data Transport Management System

360data Transport Management System (TMS) provides a cloud-based, centralized route outlining software. This technology allows a better insight into inbound and outbound shipments in real-time. Companies can automate shipment planning and optimize rates. An affordable price and easy-to-implement features with minimal IT development makes 360data TMS an excellent solution for  food logistics.

10-4 Systems: Smaller companies making smarter decisions

Smaller carrier companies are upgrading their systems to better plan and manage consumer demands with minimum food wastage. Companies like 10-4 Systems developed a technology to ensure business growth along with benefits to logistic partners and consumers.10-4 Systems allows for real-time tracking of weather, risk analytics and product level detail to smaller carrier companies. It uses a 10-4 analytical engine to collect the data. This includes loads, product stop locations, reefer temperature, position events, order information, shipment updates, etc. The data is integrated into the platform and can be easily accessed by the user. This smart supply chain technology allows companies to make informed decisions based on analytical data.

Efficient food supply for socioeconomic progress

Overall, companies are adopting automated approaches to meet food supply demands for sustainable development. There is little doubt that these technological innovations have helped industries to improve efficiency, optimize economic yields, reduce costs and build trust between consumers and brands. A reliable, efficient food supply chain will not only help in ensuring a rapid economic progress, but also help us to overcome social challenges in the world.


Interested in exploring more innovations making way in food logistics? Feel free to reach out to Rachel Murkett (rmurkett@prescouter.com), PreScouter Project Architect and food and beverage industry thought leader.

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