Joe Witte

Jun 30, 2020

FDA Announces "New Era of Smarter Food": Here's what it means to you

Updated: Dec 19, 2022

The FDA is leading the charge to implement tech traceability in our food supply chain. At the helm of this drive is Frank Yiannis, the Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response, who helped break ground with early pilots of product traceability at his previous engagement with Walmart. In 2019, Frank announced a new direction for the food industry which will build on past FSMA (Food Safety Modernization Act) initiatives. FSMA has focused on implementing preventative measures to help alleviate the 3000+ deaths and 128,000 sicknesses which occur each year, impacting our health and economy.

"...a new approach to food safety...incorporates the use of new technologies that are being used in society and business sectors all around us. These include blockchain, sensor technology, the Internet of Things, and Artificial Intelligence to create a more digital, traceable, and safer food system." - Frank Yiannis, Deputy Commissioner, FDA

In order to expand upon the key components of FSMA such as GMP's, accreditation and transportation guidance, the FDA is developing an outline how technology and systems can develop digital, traceable food systems. The initiative, "New Era of Smarter Food" has 4 key objectives in the program to include:

  1. Tech enabled traceability and food borne outbreak response

  2. Smarter tools and approaches for prevention

  3. Advancing the safety of new business models and Retail Food Safety Modernization

  4. Food Safety Culture

FDA Announces "New Era of Smarter Food"

The FDA's position on tech-enabled traceability is covered in the blueprint as follows:

Tech-Enabled Traceability: The records involved in moving food through the supply chain are still largely paper-based. This creates a system in which it is necessary to take one step forward to identify where the food has gone and one step back to identify the previous source. This, along with insufficient data identifying the product along the supply chain, creates an inability to rapidly track and trace food. During an outbreak, this can cost lives, millions of dollars in avoidable product loss, and damage to consumer trust. As has been seen with outbreaks in fresh leafy greens and other foods over the past decade, anonymity and lack of traceability in the food system are an Achilles heel that hinders more significant progress in rapid traceback efforts to identify contaminated foods. It also stands in the way of the transparency needed to better understand the supply chain in the event of public health crises, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, and to create a more nimble, resilient, and interoperable food system.

You can read the full blueprint document here:

These initiatives are the foundation of what drives TagOne to support our customers. Our objective is to move these ideas to realities in order to help keep your customers safe, and help your company avoid significant regulatory and legal risks. Our blockchain integrated supply chain technology is designed specifically to support complex natural products that evolve through manufacturing and processing and are increasingly complex to track from "seed to sale". But with best practices and tech solutions, the ability to build product confidence with your buyers is now available.

To learn more, call us at 609.786.2426 or you can request a demo here: