The Tech That Will Prevent The Next Big Foodborne Illness Outbreak | Fast Company
By tracking every step of the food production process, the next time people start getting sick from cantaloupes, it will be much easier to find which farms are clean, and which are responsible.
Food contamination has been in the news recently, and for good reason; at this moment, people in the U.S. are still getting sick from cantaloupe tainted with listeria. Every year, there are over 76 million food-related illnesses. And at least some of them could be prevented if suppliers used more comprehensive tracking systems.
Case in point: Using technology from IBM and food safety-technology company N2N Global, fruit and vegetable co-op Cherry Central can look at a bottle of its juice and tell you what oranges went into it, when the oranges were harvested, where they were harvested, who harvested them, where they were located through the entire process, when they were transported, what transport vehicle was used, and who the oranges were sent to. All of the data can be viewed and analyzed in real-time, courtesy of IBM’s analytics capabilities.
Every time a food product is moved or touched by someone new, supply chain data can be updated via mobile phone with information about date, time, location, temperature, and food safety compliance.

The Tech That Will Prevent The Next Big Foodborne Illness Outbreak | Fast Company

By tracking every step of the food production process, the next time people start getting sick from cantaloupes, it will be much easier to find which farms are clean, and which are responsible.

Food contamination has been in the news recently, and for good reason; at this moment, people in the U.S. are still getting sick from cantaloupe tainted with listeria. Every year, there are over 76 million food-related illnesses. And at least some of them could be prevented if suppliers used more comprehensive tracking systems.

Case in point: Using technology from IBM and food safety-technology company N2N Global, fruit and vegetable co-op Cherry Central can look at a bottle of its juice and tell you what oranges went into it, when the oranges were harvested, where they were harvested, who harvested them, where they were located through the entire process, when they were transported, what transport vehicle was used, and who the oranges were sent to. All of the data can be viewed and analyzed in real-time, courtesy of IBM’s analytics capabilities.

Every time a food product is moved or touched by someone new, supply chain data can be updated via mobile phone with information about date, time, location, temperature, and food safety compliance.

Microchip-equipped sensors can be designed to monitor and measure not only motion, but also temperature, chemical contamination or biological changes. The applications for sensor-based computing, experts say, include buildings that manage their own energy use, bridges that sense motion and metal fatigue to tell engineers they need repairs, cars that track traffic patterns and report potholes, and fruit and vegetable shipments that tell grocers when they ripen and begin to spoil.

A million little computers focus on stronger rice

The University of Washington and IBM’s World Community Grid will study rice at the atomic level then combine that knowledge with traditional cross breeding techniques used by farmers throughout history. The goal is to develop stronger strains of the grain that could produce crops with larger and more nutritious yields.

IBM - 16 May 2008 A million little computers focus on stronger rice - United States

The survey of 1,000 consumers in the 10 largest cities nationwide shows that consumers are increasingly wary of the safety of food purchased at grocery stores, and their confidence in — and trust of — food retailers, manufacturers and grocers is declining. The study also shows that 60 percent of consumers are concerned about the safety of food they purchase, and 63 percent are knowledgeable about the content of the food they buy. Eighty three percent of respondents were able to name a food product that was recalled in the past two years due to contamination or other safety concerns.

A similar pattern is emerging today, experts say, for what is being called smart infrastructure — more efficient and environmentally friendlier systems for managing, among other things, commuter traffic, food distribution, electric grids and waterways. This time, the crucial technological ingredients include low-cost sensors and clever software for analytics and visualization, as well as computing firepower…
I.B.M., with its large research labs and technology services business, has the most experience in the widest range of digital infrastructure projects. Many of its most advanced projects are in Europe, where energy costs are higher than in the United States. But while Europe remains a few years ahead, there is growing interest and investment in America, said Sharon Nunes, a scientist who heads I.B.M.’s environmental innovations group
(via Smart Infrastructure Brings Efficiencies to Roads, Rail, Water and Food Distribution - NYTimes.com)

A similar pattern is emerging today, experts say, for what is being called smart infrastructure — more efficient and environmentally friendlier systems for managing, among other things, commuter traffic, food distribution, electric grids and waterways. This time, the crucial technological ingredients include low-cost sensors and clever software for analytics and visualization, as well as computing firepower…

I.B.M., with its large research labs and technology services business, has the most experience in the widest range of digital infrastructure projects. Many of its most advanced projects are in Europe, where energy costs are higher than in the United States. But while Europe remains a few years ahead, there is growing interest and investment in America, said Sharon Nunes, a scientist who heads I.B.M.’s environmental innovations group

(via Smart Infrastructure Brings Efficiencies to Roads, Rail, Water and Food Distribution - NYTimes.com)

Given major recalls in recent years, getting smarter about food—knowing where our food comes from and who has handled it—is becoming more of a priority for governments and consumers around the world. In Norway, the government has set a 2010 deadline for food traceability standards and policy as part of its e-Traceability (eSporing) program, which aims to increase the safety of Norwegians’ food supply by bringing greater visibility to that supply chain. (IBM - Smarter planet - Smarter food)

Given major recalls in recent years, getting smarter about food—knowing where our food comes from and who has handled it—is becoming more of a priority for governments and consumers around the world. In Norway, the government has set a 2010 deadline for food traceability standards and policy as part of its e-Traceability (eSporing) program, which aims to increase the safety of Norwegians’ food supply by bringing greater visibility to that supply chain. (IBM - Smarter planet - Smarter food)

Conversations for A Smarter Planet: Food, Topic 4 in a Series

How do we put food on our tables? Once, people simply relied on their local farmers. Today, we depend on a global web of growers, fisheries, packers, shippers, manufacturers, retailers as well as government and industry bodies.

Conversations for A Smarter Planet: Food, Topic 4 in a Series

How do we put food on our tables? Once, people simply relied on their local farmers. Today, we depend on a global web of growers, fisheries, packers, shippers, manufacturers, retailers as well as government and industry bodies.