With the passing of each year, there is an increased interest in consumer protection. This is because consumers want to know what they are eating or drinking, how the products are made, and what the ingredients are. In a recent trend in the EU, it has now required labels to provide the place of provenance, or country of origin of the product or primary ingredient of the product. The labels must reference the geographical area indicating where the product has derived from ‘EU’, ‘non-EU’, ‘EU and non-EU’, region, body of water, and the country of origin or place of provenance.
The reason for this new rule to be put in place is because when something goes wrong within a supply chain, it could have serious effects on a persons’ health. The WHO (World Health Organization) estimates that 600 million people fall ill after eating contaminated food each year, along with a mortality rate of 420,000 per year. Due to the risks wrongly labeled food can have on your health, the EU is continuing to take extra measures to target food safety so that the consumer understands where the food they are buying has been produced, how it was handled, and where the product arrived in the process.
Having a way to trace the origin of each ingredient within a product helps supply chains act quickly and effectively when necessary. This is why they are using blockchain technology to make the food tracking process easier. This technology helps reduce cost and risk of food safety between a consumer goods company and a retailer. Because of the transparency between food chain suppliers and consumers, they know where their products are derived, they know the authenticity of the product, and they continue to look for new products overtime.
Going into the future, the EU can see this trend evolving and contributing to the growth of the economy. The technology being used to track ingredient origins and taking measurements to be transparent to customers will create jobs. These jobs include capital management, risk management, automation engineering, AI development, and much more. New markets and opportunities will arise as consumers begin to buy more and further experiment with products because of the added transparency and comfort of knowing where the ingredients within a product derives. The growth of consumer consciousness will lead to healthier eating habits. Due to this new, highly evolving demand of healthier products and more transparency, it will lead companies to cater to the demand; adding more healthier options on the shelf.
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