Edible Bar Codes on Beef: It’s What’s For Dinner

Edible Bar Codes on Beef: It’s What’s For Dinner

September 29, 2018

Soon you can aim your smart-phone at a piece of beef and have an app display the meat’s entire history, such as where it was raised, what it was fed, and when and where it was processed.

A new electronic etching procedure developed by Pricewaterhouse Coopers creates an invisible, edible barcode made of non-toxic silicon dioxide.  At first, tags will be embedded in the beef’s primary packaging only, but eventually even individual steaks could be tagged.

The technology will be launched first in Australia and China in the upcoming year.  Such measures will help protect branded names for beef as well as keep food supplies safer for consumers, using the new technology to avoid repeats of multiple past food fraud incidents.

This post is based on the Herald Scotland article, Rog Wood: Hi-tech ways to tell us where our food comes from , by Rog Wood, September 3, 2018; and the Telegraph article, Fake steaks to be exposed by invisible barcode scannable on smart-phones, by Henry Bodkin, August 13, 2018. Image source: Image Source/GIPhotoStock.

Discussion Questions:

1. How will the use of invisible barcodes make the supply chain for meat more transparent?

Guidance: In Continue reading

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Robot Burgers in San Francisco

Robot Burgers in San Francisco

September 14, 2018

Try the new $6 burger. It’s made by a robot in the new Creator restaurant in San Francisco.

The robot uses over 350 sensors and 20 computers to make the customizable burger.  The restaurant is only open part-time at the moment, but plans to open full-time in September.  All of the ingredients are locally sourced.

Currently, four kinds of hamburgers are being made by the robot.  But in the future, customers will be able to control how much sauce and seasonings will be added by the robot.  Inherently, all of the sides are made by humans, and the ordering process is manual as well.


Video Spotlight: Robots Are Making Burgers in San Francisco


This post is based on the NPR article, Fad or the Future? Robot-Made Burgers Wow the Crowds in San Francisco, by Anna Mantzaris, August 24, 2018; and the YouTube video, World’s First Entirely Robotic Restaurant | Robots are Making Burgers in San Francisco, by Prep4School, June 23, 2018. Image source: Shutterstock / Palto.

Discussion Questions:

1. Why use a robot for making a hamburger?

Guidance: At the moment, the appeal is the novelty of the robot.  But, one Continue reading

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