Traceability requirements in supply chain management are getting more and more strict in order to ensure product quality and public safety. Such requirements are particularly difficult to reach in the agro-food sector, especially for fresh ready-to-eat (RTE) vegetables, where specific needs exist; for example, mixed RTE salads are made of different produces, and there is the need to track and trace the treatments all the ingredients separately receive, avoiding gaps in the electronic histories. Traceability global standards, along with the adoption of Radio Frequency (RF) technologies have been widely experimented in this field; nevertheless, there are still many difficulties. Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN) cause a big impact on the existing information system, and meet the opposition of professionals in the field such as agronomists who feel out of the process. Additionally, Ultra-High Frequency (UHF) Radio Frequency IDentification (RFID)-based item-level traceability is still too expensive. In this paper, we propose an integrated and innovative solution for the ‘‘gapless’’ traceability of fresh RTE vegetables produced by an Italian agro-food company. Most approaches to sensor-based implementations completely replace agronomists. By contrast, our solution keeps the agronomists in the greenhouses but empowers them with smart technology. The Agronomist Android mobile App uses Near Field Communication (NFC) technology to allow the linking of plants and traceability information, following the EPCglobal standard. We achieve low costs by using DataMatrix technology for item-level tagging, while restricting the use of UHF RFID to coarse-grained grouping levels (case and pallet). We adopt the Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) architectural style for granting flexibility and scalability while preserving compatibility with legacy applications. We obtained the experimental results we report by using a Living Laboratory approach; the experiments we carried on have demonstrated the good performances of RFID tags and readers when used in conjunction with fresh vegetables products, as well as the actual effectiveness of the proposed gapless traceability system.

An innovative and low-cost gapless traceability system of fresh vegetable products using RF technologies and EPCglobal standard

MAINETTI, LUCA;PATRONO, Luigi;STEFANIZZI, MARIA LAURA;VERGALLO, ROBERTO
2013-01-01

Abstract

Traceability requirements in supply chain management are getting more and more strict in order to ensure product quality and public safety. Such requirements are particularly difficult to reach in the agro-food sector, especially for fresh ready-to-eat (RTE) vegetables, where specific needs exist; for example, mixed RTE salads are made of different produces, and there is the need to track and trace the treatments all the ingredients separately receive, avoiding gaps in the electronic histories. Traceability global standards, along with the adoption of Radio Frequency (RF) technologies have been widely experimented in this field; nevertheless, there are still many difficulties. Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN) cause a big impact on the existing information system, and meet the opposition of professionals in the field such as agronomists who feel out of the process. Additionally, Ultra-High Frequency (UHF) Radio Frequency IDentification (RFID)-based item-level traceability is still too expensive. In this paper, we propose an integrated and innovative solution for the ‘‘gapless’’ traceability of fresh RTE vegetables produced by an Italian agro-food company. Most approaches to sensor-based implementations completely replace agronomists. By contrast, our solution keeps the agronomists in the greenhouses but empowers them with smart technology. The Agronomist Android mobile App uses Near Field Communication (NFC) technology to allow the linking of plants and traceability information, following the EPCglobal standard. We achieve low costs by using DataMatrix technology for item-level tagging, while restricting the use of UHF RFID to coarse-grained grouping levels (case and pallet). We adopt the Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) architectural style for granting flexibility and scalability while preserving compatibility with legacy applications. We obtained the experimental results we report by using a Living Laboratory approach; the experiments we carried on have demonstrated the good performances of RFID tags and readers when used in conjunction with fresh vegetables products, as well as the actual effectiveness of the proposed gapless traceability system.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11587/380144
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