Packaging systems, preservation methods, ingredient quality, and the like. These are what you might think of when talking about tools designed to help improve food quality. What some might not be aware of is that a Wireless monitoring system can have a great impact on food quality. But first, let’s talk about perishables.
What Do you Mean Perishables?
It is important to understand what is a perishable product. More importantly also, why it is vital to keep in a temperature-controlled environment. Perishable products are goods that have a limited lifespan compared to other products. These types of goods are more prone to spoilage or decay. It can even become unsafe to use if it is not kept at the optimal temperature levels at all times. Examples of perishable or temperature-sensitive products are:
- Dairy Products,
- Meat, and Poultry,
- And Pharmaceuticals fall into the category of perishable products as well.
They need to be kept under specific temperature and humidity conditions at all times. Vaccines are a good example of this. Vaccines must have verifiable temperature data levels from the moment of their manufacture up to their administration. Without this information, there is almost no other way to know if it is effective to use anymore. Even if handled correctly, these delicate goods can still be tricky to navigate through the supply chain to customers before they lose their value over time. Worse comes to worst, and these can even spoil before reaching the final consumer.
Due to the short lifespan, it makes it harder for these products to move compared to other products. These can be even more problematic when transporting over long distances. Operating a vehicle of goods is one thing, but shipping delicate goods is another story. Any manager responsible during this process must make it a priority to ensure the integrity of these products. Field managers must be meticulous throughout the delivery process. This is to ensure the safety of perishable goods so that shipments arrive in good condition.
So How Can a Wireless Monitoring Help?
Wireless sensor technology allows tracking the location and monitoring the levels of temperature a cargo holds remotely. In case of an emergency or a malfunction, it can even trigger an alert in the cooling systems to help notify. The collected data and important event alerts need to be delivered immediately to the responsible parties. This is to ensure that the necessary action needed can be taken right ahead. Wireless monitoring systems have multiple options that are capable to notify business owners and field supervisors. These include email, SMS, or smartphone notifications that can notify almost instantly. With this, it can provide them with just the amount of time to take care of the situation at hand.
What are the Benefits of Wireless Monitoring for Perishables?
Here are some reasons why a wireless monitoring can benefit perishables in more ways than one.
Minimizing Delivery Delays
As earlier stated, many food items have a short life. Produce itself can only last for a few days or weeks. Any kind of delay can significantly impact the quality of the food that arrives at the store. So imagine if fruits or vegetable over-ripen before they reach their destination. Wireless monitoring systems can help by keeping your delivery on time and on task. It can help in giving drivers the best routes to avoid traffic and from getting lost on the roads. These capabilities help in minimizing delivery delays, thus ensuring a greater chance your shipments of perishables can arrive on time.
Tracking in Real-Time
A lot of things can go wrong during things involving transportation and logistics. They can be quite complicated for a reason. Things like vehicle breakdowns, cooling system malfunctions, cargo theft, and any other type of accident can happen. Especially when handling delicate goods like perishables. By using the technology of wireless sensors, it is possible to know the precise location of vehicles at all times. This also applies to knowing the temperature condition of the cargo on board. On-demand access to real-time actionable data is one of the main reasons that this greatly helped the cold chain.
Monitoring the Temperature and Humidity
The ones in charge of the cold supply chain will have complete visibility over the condition of their shipments. This is due to the help of wireless sensors for monitoring the temperature and relative humidity levels. The small and wireless sensors can function as a data logger or create an accurate mapping of temperature levels throughout the journey. The shipment’s temperature can be automatically logged and monitored in real-time on any mobile device or computer.
Event alerts provide a steady information flow. They help business owners and field managers in keeping them updated about the condition of their shipment. Any party responsible can handle any situation promptly with the emergency alerts. For example, a driver can immediately be informed if a refrigerator unit fails. Meanwhile, the road assistance teams are then directed to the location of the vehicle. A timely response can be the difference between a spoiled cargo and a shipment in pristine condition.
Other Things to Know When Transporting Perishable Goods
Modern wireless monitoring devices can be integrated with advanced sensors. With this, it can help monitor the condition of commercial vehicles and their cargo holds. This is especially fortunate for the companies and drivers transporting their perishable goods. Because of this, you can do more than just track the location. This means that they can also accurately measure and track the temperature and humidity levels in the cargo hold around the clock. A remote server then can be accessed on-demand once this information is sent to it. With this, it can offer a full awareness of the condition of the transported goods. Using the event alerts with predetermined temperature and humidity limits, field managers can trigger an automated warning to the vehicle’s driver and responsible supervisor if surpassed.
The Overall Role of a GPS
So, in general, why go wireless? What makes them better than any other alternative solution on the market for remote temperature and monitoring?
These wireless sensors are IoT-enabled sensors integrated with a vehicle tracking system. It can also be easily installed with any type of vehicle or trailer. But if we look at it further, there is one main reason why. It is because real-time and accurate monitoring of the temperature, humidity, overall condition, and location of vehicles in a fleet has been proven to significantly optimize fleet operations. This can lead to reduced downtime and also in reduced paperwork.
AKCP Wireless Monitoring Solution
NIST Wireless Temperature Sensor and Data Logger
Place the NIST calibrated, certified temperature sensor with internal calibration check and failover on your shipment, inside your warehouse or medical refrigerator. Monitor temperature and log data internally. Anytime the sensor is within range of an AKCP Wireless Tunnel™ Gateway (WTG) data is synchronized and uploaded to AKCPro Server. Install WTG’s at strategic points through your vaccine cold chain. Connect via Wi-Fi, Ethernet, or cellular data. For live monitoring during transport, such as inside refrigerated trucks, a GPS option is available. Through this visibility of the whole supply chain, you can minimize temperature excursions and ineffective vaccines.
Every day, many of the food we consume (and by extension medical supplies) are in good condition thanks to technologies like wireless monitoring systems.
With a wireless monitoring system, helping streamline long-range transport operations to ensure that the shipments will still be in perfect condition upon destination arrival is now easier. With that, perishable goods, despite having a lot of strict requirements, won’t suffer in quality that much anymore.