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Packaging line enhancements will increase traceability and food safety

In 2023, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a series of recalls for produce due to potential contamination by pathogens like listeria or salmonella. The affected items included whole cantaloupes, fresh-cut fruit, premade salads, enoki mushrooms, bean sprouts, and fresh diced onions. In response, the FDA has intensified its focus on produce handling and traceability, adopting new regulations to bolster food safety. These measures include advanced packaging and automated processes to aid compliance.

Furthermore, the FDA has launched an educational video series highlighting the role of tech-enabled traceability in preventing foodborne illnesses. The series showcases low- or no-cost traceability technologies, emphasizing their benefits for both consumers and producers. This initiative is part of the FDA's New Era of Smarter Food Safety campaign, aiming to foster a digital, efficient, and secure food system.

Technological advancements in traceability and food safety often incorporate packaging line enhancements, such as sophisticated code printing and scanning. The introduction of the two-dimensional (2D) GS1 Digital Link code, which provides comprehensive product information, marks a significant leap forward. This code is designed to facilitate product traceability across the supply chain.

Packaging also plays a crucial role in maintaining food safety, with innovations in active packaging materials that extend shelf life and inhibit microbial growth. The development of renewable packaging options aligns with sustainability goals, reducing dependence on fossil fuel-derived plastics.


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