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IsoFoodtrace authenticates food origin and production practices using a biochemical fingerprinting technique powered by stable isotope technology, offering time- and cost-efficient third-party test that assures customers of the identity of the products they buy.
Stable isotope analysis measures the natural weight variations in atoms of all biological materials, and acts as an identifying fingerprint. The technology eliminates supply chain auditing by directly testing only a few gram physical samples of the end product itself. Through machine learning analysis, these fingerprints can be harnessed to identify and confirm different attributes of food, including origin, wild-caught, organic, grass-fed and free-range.
IsoFoodtrace uses machine learning to analyse stable isotopic ratios in food as a biochemical fingerprinting technique to authenticate claims of food origin and production practices. The range of food attributes that are currently testable include origin, wild-caught, organic, grass-fed and free-range.
Chemical elements such as carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and sulphur have different naturally occurring forms that vary by weight. These forms are called stable isotopes, which constitute the core of our technology. . In crops and livestock, the heavy-to-light isotope ratios of chemical elements vary with geography and courses of nutrients . For example, organic vegetables contain more ‘heavy nitrogen’ than conventionally farmed vegetables because manure has more ‘heavy nitrogen’ than synthetic fertilizers. Utilising this biochemical phenomenon, we can scientifically trace, hence verify the food production attributes from the end product without the need of tedious auditing.
Analysis of stable isotopic ratios requires only a few grams of food sample, which is first purified and ground into a uniform powder, then reduced into gases using an Elemental Analyser. The resulting gases are subsequently fed into an Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer, which sorts and measures the gases by weight to obtain the isotopic ratio. The detected isotope values of samples are then compared with a database of known sample values to confirm or refute labelled claims.