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News From The Future: RFID In Your Food

What if your food were as rich in information as it is in nutrients? That’s the vision of an art student who recently  demonstrated online a prototype of a system where an edible chip embedded in your lunch communicates its nutritional information, provenance, travel miles, and so on to your phone via a reader in the plate. With this system, people could check ingredient lists for allergens, tally up the carbon footprint of their meal, or figure out whether they’ll still have calories left for dessert.

Sound fanciful? Perhaps. But such   radio-frequency identification chips, which are best known for use in automatic toll-paying devices and some credit cards, can be found in all sorts of unlikely places today, from hotel towels to casino chips to people. And there is in fact an edible version— Kodak patented it in 2007. The day when cupcakes reveal their secrets to your phone might not be as far off as you think.

Phillip Torrone

Editor at large – Make magazine. Creative director – Adafruit Industries, contributing editor – Popular Science. Previously: Founded – Hack-a-Day, how-to editor – Engadget, Director of product development – Fallon Worldwide, Technology Director – Braincraft.


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Comments

  1. This is Hannes Harms (http://www.hannesharms.com/) work at the Royal College of Art, London

  2. This is Hannes Harms (http://www.hannesharms.com/) work at the Royal College of Art, London

  3. Yeh, I had this idea back in the late 80′s. The only difference was that it was a Joke. The idea I had was an electronic toilet that could do exactly the same thing. It could tell you by digitally analyzing your waste matter in the bowl what the content or parts per million (Vitamins,Nsaids,Toxins,Scrubbers etc.) one might have in their stool. Then by gathering such information one could in collaboration w/ their Doctor or Health Care Provider either change their diet or medication accordingly to help keep certain vital organs at a safe range.

  4. Yeh, I had this idea back in the late 80′s. The only difference was that it was a Joke. The idea I had was an electronic toilet that could do exactly the same thing. It could tell you by digitally analyzing your waste matter in the bowl what the content or parts per million (Vitamins,Nsaids,Toxins,Scrubbers etc.) one might have in their stool. Then by gathering such information one could in collaboration w/ their Doctor or Health Care Provider either change their diet or medication accordingly to help keep certain vital organs at a safe range.

  5. Milan Balogh says:

    It is very simple to do this today: Make a QR Code, point to a link on the web and pull the data from there. And it is WAY more cheaper.. really.