Food Traceability

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Produce Traceability

The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), the most sweeping reform of our food safety laws in more than 70 years, was signed into law by President Obama on January 4, 2011. It aims to ensure the U.S. food supply is safe by shifting the focus from responding to contamination to preventing it and is scheduled for full implementation by 2014.

When a farmer harvests a crop, or a packer selects product to send to their customers, they upload key data to HarvestMark.

That information is linked to a unique HarvestMark Code on the label. When consumers trace the Code at HarvestMark.com, they instantly receive the traceability information on that product, providing data as where it was grown and whether it's subject to a recall.

Consumers can also find out more, like pictures of the farm, or the story behind the farmer, give feedback about the product they purchased, and discover nutrition information, and even recipes

The Produce Traceability Initiative is a voluntary, industry wide effort designed to help the industry maximize the effectiveness of current track and trace procedures, while developing a standardized industry approach to enhance the speed and efficiency of traceability systems for the future.  

The PTI is an industry led, supply chain wide initiative, industry participants cover every segment of the produce supply chain.

Consumer Findings


Research shows people are 12% more likely to buy a product that can be traced.

Consumer request traceability because it provides security about the products they buy and more confident holding producers accountable.

Direct Marketing Campaigns to produce consumers linked to those who purchase medicines or beverages looking for tamper proof seals.

The ability to trace food will become the norm within the next few years.

Produce Traceability Initiative (PTI)


The produce industry has been experiencing a push from both consumers and the Federal government. The Produce Traceback Initiative is aimed at promoting standardized efficient  traceability. This is a mighty task that will require a major overhaul of current practices. To reach the various milestones that the Produce Traceability Initiative sets forth will require significant investment from growers, shippers, and packers of fresh fruits and vegetables. However, this investment should lead to some increased efficiencies in processing metrics, and a dramatic improvement in the investigation of food safety incidents.

The promotion of the Produce Traceback Initiative comes at a time when consumer confidence in the food supply is at a low point. This lack of confidence was created by the recent food borne illness outbreak of E. coli in fresh spinach. This outbreak was not linked to spinach in a timely manner and was wrongly associated with tomatoes. This caused tremendous economic hard ship to tomato growers across the nation. Another outbreak without an efficient system to traceback the source will lead to a huge market loss and even a bigger drop in consumer confidence

About HarvestMark Traceability Solutions


HarvestMark is the industry-leading fresh food traceability platform from YottaMark, Inc. HarvestMark solutions deliver transparency and unparalleled insight into the fresh supply chain that drives sales and profit. Designed for a wide range of fresh products, the HarvestMark platform supports industry standard case- and pallet-level traceability. HarvestMark for Items extends the platform to individual sales units – driving loyalty by connecting farm to fork, speeding food safety communication, and reconnecting shoppers with the people who grow and sell their food. To date, more than 4 billion packages of fresh food have been enabled with HarvestMark traceability, from the produce aisle to the meat case.

News Release

Redwood City, Calif. – April 18, 2012 – YottaMark, Inc., a leader in fresh food traceability and supply chain insights, announced today it has been awarded two new key patents on product traceability and authentication. U.S. Patent No. 8,152,063 “Case Labeling for Field Packed Produce” and No. 8,155,313 “Systems and Methods for Employing Duo Codes for Product Authentication” were issued on April 10, 2012. With these awards, the YottaMark portfolio has grown to eight issued patents, reflecting the Company’s ongoing commitment to innovation and technology development.

The ‘063 patent teaches a method for produce traceability in which rolls of traceability labels are printed in bulk, with a different pre-assigned lot code per roll(s), and later assigned harvest data by scanning an included barcode. Perfect for cost-effective implementation of standards such as the Produce Traceability Initiative (PTI), this innovation allows large quantities of traceability labels to be pre-printed and used in the field as needed, while eliminating the need to deploy printers and computers on the farm. Additionally, the ‘063 patent teaches a method to add a unique code on each case label, a feature that allows capture of additional data during harvest and distribution, which can be used later for business intelligence and process optimization

Q&A: Produce Traceability Initiative

What are the benefits of this traceability process?

  • Enhance and maintain the confidence of consumers and government, supporting industry’s commitment to food safety.
  • Limit the scope and cost of recalls to suspect product only, providing a return on the industry’s investment by allowing non-implicated product to remain in distribution and on store shelves so the impact to the specific product in the marketplace is greatly reduced.
  • Investigations can occur more efficiently, expediting tracking while minimizing business disruptions and costs.
  • The information can be stored electronically throughout the supply chain, permitting electronic searching and analysis that will produce answers more quickly.
  • From an operational standpoint, product information is consistent across the industry and around the world.

Current Update?

  • The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), the most sweeping reform of our food safety laws in more than 70 years, was signed into law by President Obama on January 4, 2011. It aims to ensure the U.S. food supply is safe by shifting the focus from responding to contamination to preventing it and is scheduled for full implementation by 2014.

About American Label


"Quality Manufacturers of Custom Labels, Tags, Decals and Nameplates"

Incorporated in 1988, American Label & Tag, Inc. original focus was to produce the highest quality pressure sensitive labels. The company quickly expanded into the tag market and, in 1997, the company built and moved into its current custom-built facility in Canton, Michigan.

Today,  American Label & Tag Inc. has grown into the digital print- on- demand market and has the capabilities to do all their own artwork, graphics, design and plate making. The company is a national distributor of printers, software, bar coding systems and accessories. The company sells labels and tags nationally and internationally.

2012 American Label & Tag Inc. is a Certified Partner by HarvestMark Traceability Solutions

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