Technology

Industry alliance formed to hasten growth of digital standards for food

14:59 SGT February 13, 2018
Industry
TOMRA Food sorters around the world are generating valuable data that has the power to optimize every part of the food supply chain. This is in addition to data from millions of other devices and applications also in use, from harvest to distribution to consumer purchase.

Norway-based TOMRA Food is forming cross-industry working groups to accelerate development of digital standards for the food industry, with meetings slated for the last quarter of 2018.

This industry collaboration will drive efficiency, productivity, waste reduction and transparency for everyone, from farmer-growers to processors and end-consumers, said Mike Riley, head of TOMRA Food.

TOMRA Sorting Food designs and manufactures sensor-based sorting machines for the food industry. Over 6,250 of the systems have been installed at food growers, packers and processers worldwide.

“Thousands of TOMRA Food sorters around the world are generating valuable data that has the power to optimize every part of the food supply chain. This is in addition to data from millions of other devices and applications also in use, from harvest to distribution to consumer purchase,” Riley explained.

“We want to work across the industry to integrate this data through digital standards that lead to continuous improvements, from precision farming to trading to retail marketing of fresh and processed food products.”

Riley added that it is vital to take the lessons, experience and technology from other industries that can be applied to the food supply chain.

As a starting point, working groups will be launched to address the following topics:

  • Precision agriculture — using sorting data to inform future farming practices
  • Packhouse operations — optimizing yield, throughput and up-time through machine data
  • Distribution — reducing waste through alignment of packaging and transport
  • Retail — integrating production data with last-mile fulfilment practices