traceability Archives

The smallholder quality penalty, defined below, is the key concept emerging out of the agriculture supply chains work conducted by LIRNEasia in 2010-12: The Smallholder Quality Penalty is the financial penalty on the market price imposed on the smallholder by the first-handler (mostly a collector) due to the uncertainty of produce quality. This allows the first-handler to offset potential losses due to the perception of lower quality when selling to the next handler downstream. Thus the SQP exists in most transactions in supply chains that involve smallholders. SQP is based on perception and maybe partly justified. Smallholders are often resource-constrained and are unable to make the investments necessary to ensure quality.
We’ve been interested in traceability since Harsha attended a conference in Cairo and then we got IDRC to fund our first agriculture research. And from bar codes, we got interested in QR codes too. At 8.01 a.m.

QR codes: Humans as hyperlinks

Posted on September 23, 2011  /  0 Comments

In our traceability work we used to debate whether bar codes should be on the cucumbers or on the crate. Then came QR. What new things can we do with QR among the BOP, I was wondering. This is one of the things the TOP is doing: Weeks earlier, a model walked a runway in Barcelona with a QR code emblazoned on the bodice of her Frans Baviera gown; meanwhile, a company called Skanz began selling silicone bracelets embellished with QR codes that enable anyone with a smartphone to scan your wrist and instantly access a Web page with your contact information, social media links, even favorite photos and videos. In other words: you’ve become a human hyperlink Report.
Some time back LIRNEasia conducted an interesting piece of research on traceability, the concept of being able to trace a food item down to its source in a particular farm. That project involved the use of mobiles to give feedback to farmers, based on numbers assigned to crates of gherkins. We talked about what could be done with barcodes on crates and perhaps barcodes on the fruits themselves, but did not implement. But now it seems that a new barcode that can be read by mobiles is being deployed, with much potential for traceability as well. The new symbols, called GS1 DataBars, can store more data than traditional bar codes, promising new ways for stores to monitor inventory and for customers to save money.