Idea:Food Computer Network - Blockchain Food Data


No blockchain on that yet. I think the problem is that you need to trust the inspector, it’s not that people try to forge documents. Or maybe not, haven’t done any research into that sort of thing.


With regards to safety: it’s a big deal. Keeping a clean room is of the utmost importance with CEA. Not just for safety, but for pest management as well.

With regards to the safety of local/fresh or even “living produce” displays:

@legionof7 this came across my Twitter and thought of you:


For anybody following this discussion, I enthusiastically recommend taking the time to read both of @Webb.Peter’s links on food safety–they’re good.


UK firm Provenance, which is focused on supply chains for food and fashion, included Fair Trade certification as part of its Indonesian tuna case study.


ok, got it. I still wonder if this is not a different situation than big
business being sued. It’s also less of a thing outside of the USA I guess.
But nonetheless important. I wonder if some kind of barter approach would
be possible, to make it more a community and less a business transaction.


You’re right in the sense that good sanitation is the main consideration. Hopefully people don’t need the threat of getting sued to inspire them to do the right thing. The point is to grow healthy, nutritious plants and to avoid poor procedures that can make people sick.


@legionof7 @wsnook @thiemehennis This has been discussed already here: GroCoin/Ethereum Blockchain


Oh that’s cool, I’ll take a look. I’m not sure if they’re still active though, Twitter hasn’t tweeted in a while. @grocoin?


Hi guys, I’ve been following the PFC community for over a year now (from Belgium). I like this topic and do think we should involve blockchain technologies sooner than later. In fact, I am a strong believer we should use the IOTA blockchain (=tangle). It is building up to become a successor to the current blockchain based distributed ledgers and addresses their typical scalability and transaction fees issues. They envision IOTA being the core behind a machine2machine/IoT economy. It brings both a platform to securely store and share data and a way to establish micropayments to incentivize without any transaction fees. I’m planning to build my own ($300) PFC and see on what levels we can benefit. I can imagine a tamper proof climate recipe sharing would be the first use case to explore. IOTA is also working with Bosch, and utilizing their XDK seems to bring added value as well - i.e. re the tamper proof sensor data topic. I also reached out to the foundation so get their view on this. If you guys want to collaborate let me know. I can point to some IOTA resources to get you up to speed, this link is the one from Bosch:


Would be super interesting to use Iota. I think that Ethereum Plasma or Blockstack may also be viable.


Wow, apparently this is further along than we thought:

Report-How-can-we-improve-agriculture-food-and-nutrition-with-open-data.pdf (539.0 KB)



one day openAG projects should be on an open data marketplace such as IOTA is building:


The more I look into this the more amazed I am at how many groups have their eye on this.

“A group of leading retailers and food companies including Nestlé and Walmart have signalled their commitment to “strengthen consumer confidence” in the foods they purchase by announcing a major blockchain collaboration with IBM. The consortium will work with ‘Big Blue’ to identify the “most urgent areas” across the global food supply chain that could benefit from the blockchain.”


also check out this artistic project, but nonetheless easy to see the wider implications and potential for larger scale implementation in something like a food computer network.


@thiemehennis @hvetters @legionof7

Amazon just acquired a patent for a “garden service” that while not necessarily utilizing blockchain, definitely enhances traceability and decentralizes food production.

Send seeds, nutrients, and data, not food.


it;s crazy these things get patented… :-/

but nice idea nonetheless.



Correct, my understanding is that the process is often a long complicated process to first culture and then identify bacteria (or fungal) contaminants. Not as easy as doing a 2 min. test. Sure there are some specific tests out there that doctors use such as the “rapid strep test”, but i think since even normal healthy humans carry some amount of strep and staph on their bodies and in their mouths i am not sure how definitive or specific those tests are. Plus most microorganisms don’t have such easy rapid tests and if they do they are probably often expensive and not optimized for automation or computer testing. In the case of the “rapid strep test” it looks kinda like a pregnancy test or in the lab it sorta looks like one of those blood typing clumping tests.

Perhaps some of these tests and reagents could be optimized for periodic automation testing and using a programmed camera to look for positive results. Might be interesting. Though it should be noted that there can be false negative and false positive test results. Also possible contamination from outside sources that can taint such tests.

PCR is becoming more useful for identifying bacteria, but it can not really be automated and requires some knowledge and equipment. Still such equipment is becoming cheaper thanks to cheaper technologies and the #DIYBIO community. See the OpenPCR and miniPCR projects if you are interested. The upside to PCR (in combination with gel electrophoresis or genotyping services) is that you can identify bacteria that is difficult or currently impossible to culture on artificial media.

from my limited knowledge for gram positive bacteria the catalase test is a quick and easy test to narrow down results (basically a reation with H2O2). This could potentially be automated with a reservoir and a programmed camera. Though on it’s own data from this and many of these tests is mostly useless without further tests. The coagulase test and agglutination tests are also quick and easy.

for gram negative bacteria the oxidase test is quick and easy. As is the Methyl-Red test.

all other tests to my knowledge need various and sometimes expensive Agar and require incubation.

Still, continuing on with your question…

Generally accepted traits for Salmonella and E. coli are as follows:

Salmonella typhimurium:
Bacillus shape, Gram Negative, Oxidase negative, Methyl-Red positive, Lactose Fermentation negative, Glucose Fermentation positive (with or without gas production), Citrate positive, H2S positive, Ntrate Reduction positive, Indole negative, Urea negative, Motility positive (able to move).

Escherichia coli:
Bacillus shape, Gram Negative, Oxidase negative, Methyl-Red positive, Lactose Fermentation positive, Glucose Fermentation positive (+gas), Citrate negative, H2S negative, Ntrate Reduction positive, Indole positive, Urea negative, Motility positive (able to move).

It should be noted that this “standard” identification comes from good sources such as Bergey’s manual of determinative bacteriology 9th edition. But even though this book is basically the bible of microbiology and is pretty good, this information is from 1994! Things can change and mutate quickly, especially bacteria in hospital or agriculture environments, and forms of Salmonella typhimurium or E. coli that do not match these exact traits probably exist.


Thanks for this! I have been thinking about blockchain for trust as well. The challenge might be resolvable if you could designate a proxy for quality. Just thinking off the top of my head, the sensor data may not indicate quality but could if a grow completed a “recipe” that correlated to quality. Am I making any sense here? You might never be able to solve the guy-trust issue, but it seems there should be empirical data to indicate a protocol was followed within an acceptable range and therefore certified as completed.

I’m aware this just scratches the tip of the iceberg (lettuce, bonk, couldn’t help myself)