20 February 2023

Implementation of a European network to support the integrity of the food chain

These days, the food industry increasingly needs to provide information on its products and inspect them. This need aims to satisfy quality standards, as well as protect products against food fraud.

Historically, producers have underestimated the value and under-exploited the data acquired internally and in particular via their quality assurance programme. Recent technological developments coupled with the effective analysis of data provide the opportunity for gradual and decisive changes. The recent activities include the development of non-destructive spectral sensors or NDSSs combined with data analysis offers credible solutions for the first time, providing high added value that can be implemented in a broad range of food industries.

The scientific literature addressing the food applications of NDSSs is flourishing. Nevertheless, currently, there’s a deep gap between this scientific literature and the actual implementation of these NDSSs within the European Union food industry. Furthermore, note that the growing complexity of food supply chains and the growing pressure on raw materials have multiplied the occurrence of food fraud.

Food crises have come one after the other over the years, such as horse meat, melamine or fipronil. Confidence in the agri-food industry, the supervisory authorities and political decision-makers has been damaged and it’s essential to take measures to restore it. 

The COST SENSORFINT initiative aims to help strengthen confidence in the European agri-food industry and is based on four themes:

  • Using NDSSs as an innovation to strengthen process quality control in the European food industry,
  • Implementation of solutions related to the integration of several signals from different NDSS to solve critical problems,
  • Development of new mathematical algorithms and real-time methods for processing NDSS signals,
  • Use of ICTs (Information and Communication Technologies) in the construction of decision-making tools based on the industrial implementation of NDSSs.

Know-how in the use of optical sensors, management of databases and the merging of data, as well as its knowledge in the authentication of agricultural products makes CRA-W a special partner in the development of analytical solutions on site for product control.

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#Analysis #Quality