A recent analysis conducted by Frost & Sullivan has found that rising instances of food recalls have encouraged development of improved food safety technologies.
Such recalls have been triggered by probable health hazards. No wonder they have called for detailed scrutiny of food safety at each step along the supply chain.
Consequently, the market is experiencing the introduction of novel packaging, new technologies for pathogen testing, progress in electronic tracking systems and intervention technologies.
Frost & Sullivan’s recent analysis checks technologies for detection of pathogen in food at different levels of processing, along with packaging technologies, intervention technologies for microbial decrease, technologies coupled with electronic traceability, sensor technologies as well as robotics and automation.
What Made People Aware of Food Safety
According to Arpita Mukherjee – an Industry Analyst with Frost & Sullivan, recent cases of food borne illnesses, which were highly publicized, have made people aware of the need for improved food safety.
She said that this has driven companies across the food supply chain to adopt new technologies for acquiring third-party certification, which will show their compliance with legal food safety requirements. This in turn will boost their brand value and encourage customer confidence.
As the nature of pathogens varies due to mutation, the risk of unfamiliar contamination triggered by indefinite sources remains high. This calls for robust food safety technologies, both on the demand and supply side of the market.
As the food sector tries to meet the increasing demand for affordable and high-quality products, it is expected to experience substantial growth in food safety technologies over the next five years.
Interestingly, safety technologies sought by the industry are customizable and affordable, apart from enabling rapid source identification and detection. Primary technologies that find acceptance in the industry include contaminants’ physical separation, non-thermal and thermal interventions, biosensors, automated food processing, as well as coatings for protection and packaging.
However, the need at present is to develop more reliable, accurate and user-friendly materials and technologies that supplement these primary measures.
According to Mukherjee, rapid pathogen testing methods are increasingly using nano-based technologies and nanomaterials.
However, she said that it won’t be before 2022 when sustainable technologies such as detection of edible pathogen composition or edible coatings will get industry recognition.
While ascertaining harmonized global food safety, the confusion over food regulations and standards among nations’ acts as a major obstacle. The steep cost of food safety technologies is yet another key challenge that the market has to overcome. However, experts say that future technological heat sealer advances will help combat these challenges over the next 3 to 10 years.
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