Demand for microsystems in the food sector


Industry needs and demand

This section considers the different aspects that can influence the demands for microsystems in the food sector: the needs and constraints from the food industry, the regulatory context, the perception of the consumers and the ethical aspects. These aspects have been analyzed in five individual reports and in a synthesis report.

The main findings are presented in the following pages:
–Industry needs and demand: page 1
–Constraints for implementing microsystems : page 2
–Current regulations: page 3
–Consumer perception: page 4
–Ethical weighing of interests: page 5
–Synthesis: page 6
–Recommendations: page 7

You can easily navigate between the different reports with the menu at the end of each page.

Industry needs and demand

1) One of the key drivers for implementing microsystems in the food sector is food safety: the food industry is always looking for opportunities to further improve the safety of food products for the consumers. In general the solutions should be as close to the production line as possible;fast;cheap;accurate and simple. More precisely there is a demand for in-line solutions (continuous measurement) as well as for portable, cheap and easy-to-use devices.

2) Another key driver is related to food quality: a better monitoring of the quality parameters of the raw materials, of materials during processing and of the final products is needed to optimize the processes. The demand is mostly for solutions allowing continuous and simultaneous measurements of several parameters. Portable devices for in-situ measurements are also in demand.

3) Overall, there is a strong demand for process control applications.In-line, on-line and at-line measurement solutions will help the industry to address the four key challenges of the sector (safety, quality, sustainability and efficiency). These solutions should be embedded in the process management systems of the industry to allow actions (measurement is not enough, they need to be utilised).

4) Solutions to optimize the water and energy consumption are needed to improve the sustainability of the sector, decrease the impact of the industry on the environment and to reduce the production costs. Tools allowing the optimization of cleaning operations are particularly in demand.

5) The recent “horse meat” crisis also reveals that there is a market for solutions allowing authentication (solutions to detect the origin of the food products), traceability and detection of fraud and adulteration.

6) Intelligent packaging that can monitor the deterioration of food products, increase their shelf-life and provide information to the consumer on the quality of the product inside are also interesting innovations.

Further reading
D3.1.2 Final report of industrial needs, demands and constraints (main author: ACTIA)
logo pdf Industry needs demand and constraints

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