The arrival of online food delivery platforms, bringing greater choice and convenience, has revolutionized the way we purchase and consume food. The capability of ordering food for delivery with a single tap of your mobile phone, whether it be your weekly supply, a meal box or a hot and ready to eat meal is the result of a series of technological and digital innovations that have as yet to run their full course.

Blockchain technology could solve food safety and fraud by enabling immediate traceability to the point of origin. (Shutterstock)
 

Sylvain Charlebois, Dalhousie University

There has been a lot of noise on cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin of late. While some suggest cryptocurrencies are a fraud, others believe them to be the next biggest economic revolution the world has seen since the internet. Bitcoin has brought to light blockchain technology, which offers great potential for food safety and verification in the agrifood sector. Yet it is far from being the panacea for a range of issues affecting the industry — at least for now.

The Foodservice Network is working with the British Standards Institution (or BSI), the national standards body of the United Kingdom, to develop a new publicly available specification BSI (PAS) related to hot food/ambient food delivery services.

Food supply chains across the world are becoming ever more interlinked and complex. The complexity of these networks is not however the greatest challenge for those wanting to know the origin or location of any particular food product. 

Several years ago, there was an explosion of new Food Retail Outlets, like Soup Works, on the high street in London and other major urban centers, offering fresh soup to hungry workers in the city. This trend survived for only a short time. Most of these companies closed their doors and their customers were eventually absorbed into the operations of Retailers like Pret A Manger, EAT and Itsu, to name just a few.

Cron Job Starts