Innovation That Matters

Edible barcodes set to tackle pharma fraud

Sport & Fitness

TruTag has developed a nano-scale, encoded compound that is edible and can be used to attach data to pills and foodstuff.

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How do patients know the medication they receive is the real deal? We’ve already seen the MedSnap ID app offer one way to quickly identify unlabeled pills, and now TruTag is providing another option, through a nano-scale, encoded compound that is edible and can be used to attach data to pills and foodstuff.

According to the company, counterfeit goods take away USD 600 billion from legitimate businesses each year, with ten percent of all medicines thought to be fake. Not only is this bad for business, it’s unsafe for patients. TruTag has developed an inert, edible silica solution that can be mixed into items such as pills, foods and other products in a nanoscopic layer with a code etched into it. The tags require no special technology to implement — simply mix a few particles of the powder-like compound into existing medicinal coatings or into food itself. When scanned with TruTag’s proprietary equipment, the codes reveal details about the content’s manufacture date and location, or other important details. The company even suggests that the tags could even be read by smartphones if the functionality was developed.

TruTags could help pharmaceutical companies to encrypt their physical products with data to help health professionals and consumers alike to ensure they have the real deal. Are there alternative ways to invisibly tag products to provide data on product histories and authenticity?

Spotted by Murtaza Patel, written by Springwise



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