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Cold Chain Management

By January 17, 2018Blog

Introduction

Temperature monitoring and shipment tracking can yield valuable data wherever they are deployed throughout the supply chain, to date this has been difficult to acquire due to sensor battery life and relative high cost. Produce can be delivered from farms to cities, even across entire countries and continents which can mean batteries die, messages are lost, and managers are left unaware of their delivery status.

In their recent report the Australian Alliance for Energy Productivity (A2EP) has shown how temperature monitoring in the food cold chain can improve energy productivity by enhancing value adding through improved food quality and reduced waste and reducing energy use.

VT are the first to bring new, Sigfox-enabled, GPS, temperature, and humidity monitoring solutions to Ireland which can provide tracking with long battery life and live messages with your location to management personnel. These devices can save energy, extend shelf life, and inform better decision making.

The Challenge

  • There is limited food condition monitoring in the global food cold chain, and what is in place is  largely limited to stationary locations, particularly cold stores.
  • Provide cold chain sensors that don’t run out of battery during long journeys
  • Allow management to track the temperature and progress of their delivery remotely even without cellular coverage
  • Overcome previous barriers including the high price and short battery life

The Solution

There is poor visibility of product temperatures along the cold chain, which presents difficulties in ensuring food safety compliance and assigning responsibility between the large number of players along the chain for loss/degradation of product quality. This lack of transparency also inhibits effective targeting of improvements to equipment and practices. There is a challenge to educate all parties handling perishable goods on decreased shelf life resulting from temperature abuse.

According to the A2EP 2017 report, mentioned above, the introduction of these technologies will increase the overall value of product, increase shelf life, reduce product loss. This is a large financial benefit and is the major justification for the food suppliers and retailers engaging in this monitoring.

The report outlines the additional benefits of;

  • Improved reputational benefits from more consistent, good quality food with longer shelf life at home and improved environmental outcomes.
  • Reduced carbon emissions from reduced energy use, reduced refrigerant leakage and reduced emissions relating to food waste.

VT offer a range of temperature and GPS trackers which are connected to the cloud with Sigfox. Every 10 minutes, the devices will send multiple temperature readings and GPS points over the network. This enables live tracking, and the easy to use platforms allows you to share your information with a link, so any level of the business network can view your data.

Among the many devices in the VT ecosystem

  • Stick’n’Track – GPS Tracker our most popular device to date!
  • Loka – WiFi Tracker extraordinary accuracy for urban areas
  • Orbit 3 – Temperature and humidity sensor specially designed for in store refrigeration

For more information on any the VT cold chain sensors please get in touch at info@vt-iot.com