How Technology and Ag Come Together

With the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act moving forward to law, technology companies are lining up to help implement the details. Much of the legislation is all about collecting, tracking, and analysis of data and information on food. This includes putting in place systems to register food facilities, collect and monitor data from production farms, notify multiple parties about food related issues, and handle food recalls.

Changes to U.S. food-safety rules may generate sales for International Business Machines Corp., Oracle Corp. and other companies that can provide systems to track outbreaks of food-borne illness.

The bill, which awaits President Barack Obama’s signature, may lead to hundreds of millions of dollars in annual sales for companies that produce the labels and scanning devices to enable tracking systems, said Ray Connelly, general manager of closely held Truetrac, a developer of agricultural product-tracking software in Salinas, California.

Much of this initial work will not be noticed by consumers right away. The legislation requires some of the implementations to be in place within 12 months after being enacted in to law. A summary of the legislation is available from GovTrack.us.