Soft Robotics raises $10M to aid in launching SoftAI powered robotic solutions

U.S. – Award-winning food robotics company Soft Robotics Inc. has announced that it has raised a USD $10M Series B extension, to expand commercial operations to meet COVID-19 pandemic-fueled demand and launch its SoftAI powered robotic solutions. SoftAI layers 3D vision and artificial intelligence technologies, on top of Soft Robotics’ patented and proven, IP69K-rated, soft grasping to give industrial robots the hand-eye coordination of human beings. The IP69K rating provides protection against entrance of dust and high temperature, high pressure water, making products with this certification ideal for use in…

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Nigeria’s council on agriculture, rural development warrants crop bio-fortification

NIGERIA – Nigeria’s National Council on Agriculture and Rural Development (NCARD), has at the 44th regular meeting of the Council, rubber-stamped mainstreaming staple crop bio-fortification in all aspects of agricultural interventions in Nigeria. This is a major stride towards improving nutrition for millions of Nigerians who suffer from micro-nutrient deficiency. The council is charged with the advocacy of agribusiness in Nigeria and providing leadership and capacity building to all stakeholders in agricultural systems. Dr. Adeola Odedina, Commissioner for Agriculture of Nigeria’s Ogun State, and a longstanding partner of HarvestPlus, had…

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Study identifies cooking method to retain zinc content of bio-fortified maize

U.S. – A recent study has found that boiling and steeping whole maize grains in an alkaline solution, a process known as nixtamalization, preserves the zinc content. This is an ancient cooking process in Mexico and Central America where tortillas are the most-consumed product prepared from nixtamalized dough. The research focused on the effects of processing and cooking methods on zinc content in common dishes that were made with zinc-bio- fortified maize. The dishes included tortillas, cornmeal cake, and maize porridge. In Mexico, 33 percent of children younger than 5…

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FDA links Salmonella outbreak in U.S. to frozen cooked shrimp

U.S. – The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Centre for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC), state and local partners, are probing a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Weltevreden infections linked to the consumption of frozen cooked shrimp manufactured by Avanti Frozen Foods of India. Avanti frozen foods is a subsidiary of the Thai Union and a manufacturer and exporter of shrimp products to the United States. A positive import sample collected earlier in the year combined with epidemiological and traceback evidence have affirmed this. Currently six cases in Nevada and Arizona…

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FHRAI seeks deadline extension for mentioning FSSAI license number on food restaurant bills

INDIA – The third largest hotel association in the world, Federation of Hotel & Restaurant Associations of India (FHRAI), has appealed to food safety regulator FSSAI to extend the deadline for mentioning FSSAI License number on bills given by food business operators. FHRAI is the voice of the hospitality industry and provides an interface between the Hospitality Industry and other stakeholders. The Food Safety and Standard Authority of India (FSSAI) had earlier charged Food Business Operators (FBOs) to footnote the FSSAI license or registration number on cash receipts or purchase…

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Citrus fiber to be incorporated as food additive as demand for clean label rises

WORLD – Extensive scientific research and studies have elevated the position of citrus fiber as a healthy food additive that can improve the product quality and texture.  Citrus fiber is a natural and clean label ingredient providing high water holding and natural emulsification properties that benefit a variety of foods and beverages. To appeal to the world’s rising health-conscious consumer base, food manufacturers are proactively working on adding citrus fiber ingredients in the production of fat-free edibles. The fiber can be obtained from citrus fruits such as orange, grapefruit, lemon…

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Mondelēz International employs blockchain technology to enhance food transparency

US – Europe’s leading food transparency blockchain, Connecting Food has assisted Mondelez International to launch their first food transparency project in the United States, with the iconic cracker brand Triscuit. Connecting Food offers digital transparency solutions which create value for agri-food players and restore consumer confidence in food. The platform is powered by blockchain, a technology which has enabled the engineering of LiveAudit, a fully digitized auditing module that provides real-time traceability of products and audits their quality, ensuring that every promise made to the consumer is upheld. By scanning…

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Kenya’s agro-business firm Kakuzi PLC secures GLOBALG.A. P

KENYA – Kakuzi PLC, a listed Kenyan agricultural company, has received an unconditional renewal of the GLOBALG.A. P (Good Agricultural Practices) which is a globally recognized agricultural food quality certification. As part of the integrated agro-business firm’s quality assurance endeavors, it has been granted the GLOBALG.A.P. version 5.2 certificate subsequent to a recent audit of its production and processing procedures. GLOBALG.A. P is a global organization that sets voluntary standards for the certification of agricultural products around the globe. The certification is widely accepted as the world’s leading standard for…

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Researchers develop natural edible coating to prolong shelf life of seabass fillets

SINGAPORE – A research team led by Prof Yang Hongshun from the Department of Food Science and Technology, National University of Singapore, has developed a preservation method to maintain the freshness and food safety of seabass fillets, by coating it with fish gelatin and infusing grape seed extract which is a type of natural additive into it. Asian seabass is one of the most commonly consumed food fish by Singaporeans and is loved by many consumers because of its high protein, low fat and ideal fatty acids composition. However, seabass…

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Laboratory instrumentation supplier Endress+Hauser development team bags prestigious AMA Innovations Award

SWITZERLAND – A team of developers at Endress+Hauser has been awarded this year’s AMA Innovations Award for developing QWX43, an inline fermentation sensor designed for breweries. The AMA Innovation Award has been in existence since the year 2000, presented for outstanding research and development work in sensor and measuring technology. It is exceptional in that it goes to the developers or developer teams of the submitted projects, not the enterprises or institutes they represent.  The QWX43 dazzled the experts at AMA Association for Sensors and Measurement with its compact design,…

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