From the field to our plate
How and where was this food produced?
We all see the increase in awareness in consumption, in the search for products at Km0. Also more requests for clear and easy to find information. It is necessary to identify a correct flow of information that goes from the manufacturer’s field to the consumer’s plate.
To answer these questions and find a solution we need to take into account all the actors that evolve around food: farmers, processors, restaurateurs and us consumers.
We at Nurideas have decided to help both manufacturers and consumers answer these questions.
This is why we are developing InSaludi, an ecosystem that concentrates all this information. And then brings it “from the manufacturer’s field to the consumer’s plate”.
InSaludi is a constantly evolving platform. Different IT systems compose it, each with a specific function. Altogether interconnected to create our final ecosystem.
As a result, our R&D has already led to the creation of the first software Products, NurTrack (Traceability) and NurScan (Quality Control). It continues with the ongoing developments of NurScan and NurInfood.
First we start with the producer – tracking his processes will allow us to have the first answers to the “where and how”!
And the producer himself will have greater control of the production processes – times, costs, management of production waste. He will be able to optimize his supply chain and improve his products, ultimately saving money!
Thus for the producers, we have developed NurTrack, a 360° traceability system developed especially for small agri-food producers.
With traceability comes a first quality control. In particular, we can verify incoming ingredients or raw materials and production processes. But problems can occur during the process – such as contamination. Or simply there are changes in quality due to temperatures or other phenomena. Producers generally monitor these factors. They regularly send samples of products to external laboratories. The laboratories run the analysis for quality control.
We offer NurScan, a system that the manufacturer can use “in-house” every day and at any time. NurScan does not replace an external control but complements it.
What is meant by “traceability”?
Traceability is the process of keeping track of all the input elements that go to create, modify or transform a product.
Not to be confused with “tracing”!
Tracing is the process that goes backwards in the production chain of a product, in order to search for a specific event or action.
Developments in progress
NurScan was born as a data collection platform for the SANUM project.
In the SANUM project we used near infrared sensors to analyze different types of milk and cheese produced in Sardinia. The spectra from the sensors showed differences between the various types of products. The spectra in fact are acting as actual fingerprints of the products. We asked ourselves “Can we do more?”, “We can, for example, create a fingerprint database of all or most part of the locally produced food?”.
The idea behind NurScan is to offer those who buy products – consumers / restaurateurs / retailers – a simple tool to check the authenticity of the product. We are also studying how to connect the nutritional values of each food to its fingerprint.
We are still in the early stages of research and development. Building this database means going to numerous companies, diversified by type of production, and collecting samples for analysis. We may need up to 300 samples for a given type of product.
This is a long process of data collection and analysis. Because we are talking above all of non-industrial products. It also means we must take into account seasonality, weather conditions. We must also consider other events beyond our control (just think about 2020 and the health emergency…) which can slow down the process.
It is an exciting project, we will keep you updated on the progress of NurScan on the dedicated R&D page.
As consumers we are interested to know where our food comes from. We want to know their nutritional values as well as the content in terms of proteins, fats, possible allergens etc.
With NurInfood we want to answer these questions.
We will start with a simple system that will allow us to query databases containing the nutritional values calculated for the foods of their country. We will add the data of the local products that come directly from the producers.
And not only the basic nutritional values, those reported on the nutritional labels. Known allergens, proteins and amino-acids values will be available. Consequently, the users can do a precise and personalised research.
In NurTrack, nutritional values can be associated with each ingredient used in the process. Real values determined in analysis laboratories, or theoretical average values from the national databases. For example, in the case of Italy we refer to the CREA database.
We use the nutritional values of each ingredient to calculate those of the final product.