Home Commodities Three key trends driving the need for new tech in traditional commodities

Three key trends driving the need for new tech in traditional commodities

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This has become particularly noticeable in when it comes to dealing with high-velocity, high-quantity food ingredient sectors such as cocoa, coffee or soybeans, and it is a concern not only for food ingredient suppliers but also large and small processed food brands as there is a direct impact on end-products.

“We commonly refer to these ingredients as ‘commodities’ today as the public idea of these food items is usually that of bulk quantity and less of differentiated grades or quality – but the fact is that these are the items that become the ingredients to be used in end-products, and it is important to ensure the quality is high from the procurement stage,”​ AI technology firm ProfilePrint Founder and CEO Alan Lai told FoodNavigator-Asia​.

“As opposed to sample testing, which is currently the most common way to ensure quality, the only feasible long-term method is to develop technology to do this, and here there is a very clear role for AI to play in the upstream grading of commodities to affect the downstream food products.

“This is becoming particularly clear is in the field of alternative protein, which we see as a high potential growth area because a lot of soybeans today are being used to make these alternative protein products, and selection of the wrong grade or type of soybeans in the beginning could mean ending up with a lousier product.

“There are many characteristics that need to be considered in choosing soybeans to make plant-based meat alternatives, for example – its freshness, its fibre content, its protein content, all of these need to be taken into consideration to make the end-product up-to-standard, and AI can help to do this quickly and efficiently.”

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