India has always been a land of extremes. And that’s no exception when it comes to technology and the food system.
On one hand, you have Chai Point using AI to understand chai needs of the office goers. On the other hand, Agricx is also using the same technology to disrupt quality assessment in agriculture.
While India has made progress on the technology front, according to EU, India’s packaging regulations aren’t quite there yet.
But it’s not just the food draft policy that needs fixing. According to the Centre for Science and Environment, the Indian poultry industry’s false advertisements need to stop too.
In the midst of this all, a father-son duo in rural India is fighting terrorism with wild honey.
Dive into this week’s edition to read this and more important news from the Indian food system.
Anusha and Elizabeth
You Can’t Spell CHAI without AI
Chai Point, with 90+ stores across India, is blending technology with its regular chai. Their IoT enabled tea dispensing machine BoxC designed for offices, also uses AI to understand user preferences for tea. Chai Point is fervently expanding its base to capture India’s $30bn tea market.
Centre for Science and Environment
The All India Poultry Development and Services Private Limited has been slammed by the Centre for Sciences and Environment (CSE) for the wrongful publication of data regarding chicken meat in India. CSE’s 2017 study, in fact, highlights poultry farms as a breeding ground for superbugs and the lack of regulation on antibiotics.
Hope in the Boat
Tata Global Beverages Ltd. maybe disinvesting in its tea plantation assets, but rumour has it that they are to acquire ethnic beverage brand Paper Boat to diversify beyond tea and coffee. Paper Boat sells stories and memories through traditional Indian beverages.
Indian Agritech companies collectively raised around $36mn in 2017 and this year seems to be following the trend. Agricx, is using computer vision and AI to assess the quality of potatoes. Read more to find what their recent round of funding means.
EU suggests FSSAI Upgrade
The National Law Review
EU has made suggestions to India’s draft Food Safety and Standards regulations and also hinted that the Standards were not “recent” enough. The suggestions also included edits to specific regulations of the Draft Standards.
Milking the Law
Sunday Guardian Live
The FSSAI’s Diet4Life project with the baby food industry may have just overridden laws by the Indian parliament on the International Code of Marketing for Breastmilk Substitutes. Dr Arun Gupta explains why this proposal could be a worry for lawmakers and India’s children.
School Meals Matter
The News Minute
The Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has drafted Regulations on Safe and Wholesome Food for School Children for 2018. This includes traffic like a system to discourage the consumption of calorie dense foods. These regulations coincide with HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar’s announcement of a reduced the NCERT syllabus and the much-talked-about New Education Policy.
Honey Bees for World Peace
Most honey jars on the supermarket shelves are sugar and most of the “organic” ones are not! A company in central India is solving this with sustainable farming. By educating rural farmers to collect wild honey, this father-son duo is fighting terrorism and rebuilding conflict zones.
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Originally published at tinyletter.com/edibleissues on February 28, 2018