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Application of RFID Technologies in the Temperature Mapping of the Pineapple Supply Chain

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan www.asabe.org

Citation:  Food Processing Automation Conference Proceedings, 28-29 June 2008, Providence, Rhode Island  701P0508cd.(doi:10.13031/2013.24541)
Authors:   Cecilia R Amador, Jean Pierre Emond, Maria Cecilia Nunes
Keywords:   RFID, Temperature Mapping, Temperature Tracking, Environmental Monitoring, Food Logistics

Current temperature tracking systems lack the convenience and accuracy demanded by the real conditions of a fast-paced produce supply chain. In recent years RFID technology has been suggested to be an enhanced method for temperature tracking because of its many benefits, such as using little instrumentation, offering the quick readings necessary for real-time decision making, and allowing the capture of long-duration temperature profiles. However, its limitation lies on its failure to provide accurate temperature readings in the critical points of the pallet and the load. The objective of this work was to study the use of RFID in temperature monitoring by comparing the performance of RFID temperature tags versus conventional temperature tracking methods, as well as RFID temperature tags with probe versus RFID temperature tags without probes. Therefore, the temperature mapping of a shipping trial comprising pallets of crownless pineapples instrumented using different RFID temperature dataloggers and traditional temperature dataloggers and packed in two kinds of packages (corrugated boxes and RPC) inside a container was performed. The results showed the many advantages of RFID temperature tracking, such as quick instrumentation and data recovery, and the possibility of accessing the sensor program and data at any point of the supply chain without a line of sight. In addition, the use of RFID tags with probe was justified by its role in determining the efficiency of the precooling operations; while the RFID tags without probe proved useful during transportation and refrigerated storage. The creation of a RFID sensor with a probe, able to record both environmental and probed temperatures is suggested.

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