Innovation

Innovation (6)

Innovation in the Foodservice Sector has never been so active or widespread. Across the industry, radical and disruptive innovation is changing the nature of foodservice and food retail.

The arrival of online food delivery platforms, bringing greater choice and convenience, has revolutionized the way we purchase and consume food. The capability of ordering food for delivery with a single tap of your mobile phone, whether it be your weekly supply, a meal box or a hot and ready to eat meal is the result of a series of technological and digital innovations that have as yet to run their full course.

Blockchain technology could solve food safety and fraud by enabling immediate traceability to the point of origin. (Shutterstock)
 

Sylvain Charlebois, Dalhousie University

There has been a lot of noise on cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin of late. While some suggest cryptocurrencies are a fraud, others believe them to be the next biggest economic revolution the world has seen since the internet. Bitcoin has brought to light blockchain technology, which offers great potential for food safety and verification in the agrifood sector. Yet it is far from being the panacea for a range of issues affecting the industry — at least for now.

The exponential growth in home food delivery is changing not only the way we purchase and consume food, it is also changing the way Restaurants and Food Retailers design and build their restaurants and shops.

Food supply chains across the world are becoming ever more interlinked and complex. The complexity of these networks is not however the greatest challenge for those wanting to know the origin or location of any particular food product. 

Pre-order services are now being touted as ‘essential’ services for the commercial success of hospitality, food and events management businesses. Proponents argue that by allowing customers to book, order and pay in advance, both customers and businesses benefit. Customers, they claim, can avoid lengthy queues and can also take advantage of the many loyalty schemes these businesses offer. Businesses benefit from the increased efficiency of their operations (customers are not standing in queues) and from the additional sales opportunities this creates.

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