FDA names 12 winners of supply chain traceability challenge

By Hank Schultz contact

- Last updated on GMT

©Getty Images - Ildo Frazao
©Getty Images - Ildo Frazao

Related tags: Supply chain, Traceability, Transparency

The US Food and Drug Administration has announced 12 winners of a challenge aimed at increasing supply chain transparency and traceability for ingredients and whole foods.

The challenge, which was announced earlier this year, had as a goal to find innovative, cost effective and scalable ways to improve supply chain security and traceability.  The challenge recieved 90 submissions from around the world.  The winners came from primarily from the United States with other winners located in Canada and New Zealand.

Building a safer supply chain with quicker response

The program’s primary goal was to better and more quickly understand where outbreaks of foodborne illness come from, how they spread and how they can be addressed.  But it also can have value for companies sourcing dietary ingredients to verify where they come from, such as from a certified organic producer or a fully licensed hemp farming operation.

“To achieve end-to-end food traceability throughout the food supply system, accessible solutions are needed that are affordable and can scale to encourage widespread adoption,”​ said Frank Yiannes, Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response.

“As illustrated through this initiative, the FDA is committed to and will continue to do its part to help ensure that companies of all sizes, including small to midsize ones, can use and benefit from new tracing technologies. Digitizing food data at no-or low-cost through the use of creative economic models and innovative solutions allows the entire food system to get smarter together,”​ he added.

Criteria

The submissions were evaluated on the following criteria:

  • Needs-based:  Addresses specific challenges for a given supply chain
  • Innovation: Uniqueness and variety and value of solution’s features
  • Usability:  Ease of navigation
  • Affordability
  • Scalability/Interoperability

Winners to present during webinar

The 12 winners are: FarmTabs, Freshly, HeavyConnect, ItemChain, Kezzler, Mojix, OpsSmart, Precise,  Roambee/GSM/Wiliot, Rfider and TagOne.  The winning entries are a mix of software solutions, systems using dedicated portals, Internet of Things (IoT) concepts and other approaches.

FDA has announced a webinar about the program scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 28 at 11 am Eastern time. The winners will present their ideas and will be open for questions.

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