A distinguishing characteristic of all perishable food products is their degradation in quality over time. The rate of degradation depends on the initial quality of the product as well as the ambient conditions they are subjected to until they reach the end of the supply chain. Clearly, a higher initial quality and relatively slow rate of degradation would result in a better quality product. While reasonable steps are taken to ensure their quality, it is rather challenging to accomplish this due to the inherent limitations in currently used technology both in warehouses as well as during transportation. A related issue is that of contamination and how tracking and tracing of food helps control the spread of contaminated items. We propose the use of the Internet Smart Card in perishable food cold supply chains for tracking/tracing and also to improve the level of control of ambient conditions and thereby the quality of the perishable item when it is sold and consumed.
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