Tracking Food Origins from Field to Table

With several recent e-coli scares linked to fresh produce, the Ag industry must know that even more stringent food safety practices are on the way. In order to truly reassure consumers that a contamination is under control, data records must be available that can trace produce back to its source--to where and when it was picked and the employee that did the picking. How do farmers tackle such a feat? It's time to turn to tech. Ag data collection software makes it possible for a farm of any size to collect and maintain such detailed records demanded by today's consumers.

Start with a unique identifier for the harvest crew pickers and another for the hand-picked specialty crops. In this example, we will use barcodes for the fruit or produce and RFID badges for the pickers and processing workers.

Begin the data capture process by using a 2nd Sight handheld computer. Designed for durability, performance, and power efficiency, each handheld is equipped with 1D/2D barcode reader and RFID/NFC capture capabilities. The handheld computer is GPS-enabled for precision agriculture (PA), satellite farming, or site-specific crop management. A typical accuracy for a handheld GPS is three to 30 meters of the true position.

Data transfers via Wi-Fi and LTE connections for constant back-end system connection and real-time data transmission.

Data gathered from the harvest crews, farm owners, farm managers, and retailers is passed via the cloud to provide information regarding the progress of the harvest, the density of the production in the field, and picking rates.