jueves, 20 de noviembre de 2014
Revolutionizing traceability DNA barcodes track the food, not the package.
Food producers will be able to spray unique DNA barcodes directly onto food to improve traceability.
DNA Trax (DNA Tagged Reagents for Aerosol Experiments (DNA TRAX), was originally developed alongside a US government agency for biosecurity purposes, but its creators saw a need for better traceability in the food industry. This new technology would replace the way weeks we use to identify the origin of tainted foods, DNA Trax can provide information within minutes.
‘Barcodes’ on food, not packaging, DNATrax can be sprayed directly onto food. Each set of microparticles has a unique DNA ‘barcode.’ By taking a swab of the surface, traceability information can be obtained from the food itself.
The technology was developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (a US national security facility with research areas including counterterrorism and defense). It has been licensed to DNATrax, which is working with producers and partners to identify its first commercial customers in the food industry.
DNATrax is a versatile material containing food-based microparticles that can be used for the safe and effective detection and tracking of aerosol releases in both interior and exterior environments. By combining FDA-approved sugars, and a unique non-biological DNA bar code, a microparticle that simulates the aerosols compromising the air around us was produced.
Traceability in a matter of minutes: DNATrax solves this problem by putting the traceability information directly on the produce. If there is a piece of produce left somewhere, even in the trash, traceability information can be recovered. A simple swab of the surface and an off-the-shelf instrument will decode the traceability information in a matter of minutes.”
The DNA barcodes comprise of around 100 DNA bases of synthetically produced nucleic acid, copied from genes unique to a deep-sea organism (and consequently one unlikely to be found in day-to-day conditions). A nearly unlimited variety of different ‘barcodes’ can be developed.
DNATrax can be sprayed directly onto food or mixed in with liquid or dry goods, the technology could, theoretically be applied to any foodstuff, although there may be practical limitations due to conditions in the supply chain.