Technology all set to revolutionize the Food Industry!

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GHG emissions have peaked at an all-time high. The Global Mortality rate is no less than a sudden blow. And co-morbidities have reached a point deemed unbearable by the healthcare units. 

Devastating? 

Yes, it is. But have we identified the storm causing this havoc? 

I know modern industries and covid would perhaps come out as scapegoats. But, mind you that this devastating impact is not only the result of some sudden or short-term changes. 

The making has always been gradual and can be traced back to the time when we shifted to a fast-paced culture. With less time, less concern, less health, and less everything, we became less and less aware of how the marketplace started exploiting our weaknesses. 

One such marketplace was Food. Targeting our busy lives, they easily made us resort to toxic preservatives and chemicals – causing various diseases and morbidities, including heart disease, Arthritis, etc. [1]

All because of food? 

There are, of course, other factors that incurred the damage, but a significant part must be attributed to food consumption. As you would be shocked to know that around 11 million people die yearly from poor food. Check out the detailed report here. [2]

Oh, that’s horrible! 

But, hey, we are changing for good! 

Glad that we GenZ are becoming more concerned about our fitness, I am sharing these major drivers of change in the Food Industry. 

What are they? 

a. A growing demand for safe and healthy food – With the social media influence or Genz’s obsession with fitness, whatever you call it – we have become more particular about health in general. 

Happy to share that according to International Information Food Council, around two third consumers check in the ingredients before a grocery purchase. [3]

The “no more toxic chemicals on our plate” determination finally urging the food industry to change for good. 

Next on the list is, 

b. Environmental Regulation – As we see, reckless use of objects such as plastic directly correlates with environmental damage. 

And if you listen to experts, it contaminates the environment akin to climate change. From ocean to soil, every useful resource is now turning into waste. [4]

That explains why governments have come up with regulations seeking a complete ban on plastics. And the food industry, a major consumer and producer of plastic in the form of packaging, is now compelled to change its way. 

Now that they are doing it, “who does it the best” has also become a competitive strategy. Let us look at it. 

c. Market Competition – Gone are the days when we saw organic production as a reason behind an increased production cost. Nowadays, the term “Organic” & “sustainable” tops the list of USPs. 

 According to reports, a whopping 90% of the Genz are willing to invest in sustainable food options. [5]

Amazing, isn’t it? 

But, the priorities haven’t always been the same for consumers and retailers. Hopefully, the market competition coupled with technological advancement brings about a change for good. 

Woah! That was an exhausting list of growth drivers. 

But, how are we going to fix all the gaps? 

That’s the best part about technology. When we use it carelessly, it turns into an uncontrollable fire. But, when used wisely, such a savior it can become. 

So the short answer is yes. 

It can all be fixed by technology. But, more than the moral, environmental, or health goals, we need to incentivize the food industries – to ensure that the change is not painful but a profitable experience for them. 

Here’s how the Food Industry benefits! 

We all know by now how important it is to reform the food industry. But, an environmental and health goals alone be enough? 

The answer is a straight NO. 

For a sustained change, we need a transformation that benefits the industry. That is when we will get to see the change. 

Who doesn’t want to up their game after all? 

So, let us quickly run down the benefits the food industry can reap from technology: 

a. Market Estimate – Stocking food is a major task done by the food industry to secure future production. So, it always pays off when the company can already predict future interest ahead of time. 

The cutting-edge examination allows a more comprehensive analysis of client needs and foresees the degree of interest across various products. 

b. Adaptability in changing conditions – In today’s world, as we become more experimentative, our food demand also keeps changing. 

The food industry must change the production plans and deliver new items quicker to the market. 

The more quickly they adapt, the more likely they outcompete other players. 

Here is what technology can do, 

AI, with the help of the regression model, can help the industries up their game with an accurate future need prediction based on a few metrics. 

cSafer production environment – A much-needed deployment of technology in the sector will not only cater to the needs of consumers but will also protect the laborers – the asset of the industries. 

How? 

Workers in food industries are often required to work in hazardous environments – increasing their vulnerability to catching diseases like Dermatitis, Asthama, etc. [6]

A computerized enviroment will ensure minimum exposure to hazardous atmospheres leading to employees’ overall well-being.

And wise industrialists know that, 

employees’ well-being = increased productivity! 

Yeah Yeah, I got that! It is good for both consumers and producers. 

But, how is the food industry adopting this change? 

AI – The number of products required in a week, month, and year? It is such an errand task and a slippery slope, leading to huge losses in case human prediction goes wrong. 

AI emerges as a true savior here – fixing not only the unpredictable tasks but also extending hands in filthy tasks as well. 

Filthy tasks? 

Yes! Packaging and fixing spills, all of that take a lot of time and lead to unnecessary untidiness.  

Now, with the help of AI robots, workers can be relieved of not having to clean the floor after completing long work hours. 

Sensors – When it comes to packaged food, We all want that perfect crispiness and crunchiness, with just the perfect flavoring on top. 

But do we know how complicated the process is? 

Some of the biggest problems include maintaining a proper temperature and moisture. 

When sensors are deployed in vehicles and refrigerators, 

they stabilize temperature and avoid any deviations. 

Ensuring just the right quality in much less effort! 

Blockchain: As we consumers are becoming increasingly aware of the repercussions, they prefer tracking down the origin of used ingredients. 

Blockchain in this area brings about transparency by eliminating the scope of counterfeit products. 

So now, you can be sure of eating only what is on the label! 

A lasting change for the greater good! 

Climate change, Pollution, diseases, the world is plagued with all of them. As a response, we see the governments overhauling various sectors. Then, how can the food sector be left from the much-needed reform? 

Plastic-free packaging and improved working conditions are just the beginning of moving towards a sustainable future. 

Real change will require consumers (us) to become more aware of our choices. To become more aware of what we eat, discard, and demand. 

And as we move forward in the sustainability race, let us remember that what industries produce is nothing but a reflection of our needs. 

 

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She is a National level Debater with many accolades and as an aspiring journalist, she aims to present and document content in a well rounded and constructive manner.

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