"RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) from Farm to Fork" (F2F) is European co-funded project launched by the University of Wolverhampton in May 2010; the project is run with other 8 European partners, representing 5 EU states. The aim of the project is to showcase how RFID technology can deliver business value to SMEs in the food & drink industry.
The University of Wolverhampton, School of Technology have a proven track record in RFID and play a major role in coordinating the F2F project, as well as development of the main system ‘F2F platform’, which accommodates the traceability data from various sectors across Europe. The School is also responsible for the delivery of two pilot demonstrators with local SMEs. Demonstrators are focusing on improving existing business processes, providing data collection and guaranteeing its availability, with particular regards to the meat and dairy sectors. This will be achieved through implementation of combination including RFID, barcodes, quick response codes and sensors, into existing business processes through to appropriate modelling.
The overall rationale for companies to adopt the F2F model is to reliably trace the distribution process of their products throughout every stage. From a consumer’s perspective F2F provides them with insight into the origin and journey that product has taken, reliably informing them of its original origin the distance it has travelled before the point of purchase; ultimately providing them to make a fully informed purchasing decision regarding their food purchase.
The School have identified pilot companies each of whom they have interrogated their business and distribution processes and systems. With this knowledge to address each company’s current and more importantly future needs they have developed databases and systems which address adaptability, ease of use, appropriate security measures and scability to allow for companies to grow with this flexible system.
The University of Wolverhampton pilot companies represent a variety of business sectors (retail, cheese producer and farm), this demonstrates the flexibility of the technology:
Making this information transparent to customers at retail shops, either by accessing it through the pc tablet located on shelf, mobile phone by scanning the QR / barcode or scanning the RFID tag with NFC phone, the assurance of product provenance and prove of quality is offered to customer instantly, which raises confidence in producer as well as retailer.
The diagram displays how ‘F2F’ traceable products, affect buyers decision process.