China still suffers from serious problems food safety caused by the illegal activities of a sector of society. Evildoers make use of any ruse that allows them to increase the profit margin by producing their food items. Malfeasance are the most varied, among which they have been documented in recent years are:
- Use synthetic paints to give more appetizing vegetables colors, Fruits and vegetables, even if these products are perishable and have already entered putrefaction processes that positioned as a serious food hazard to consumers.
- Mix food additives or adulterants to reduce the average price. Thus we have seen rice mixed with plastic or formula mixed with toxic chemicals, fact that caused the death of several newborns and many other chronic diseases, in what has surely been the most scandalous case of food fraud and sounded in recent times.
- Falsifying data provenance, methodology breeding and care received by farm animals.
These fronts have tried to combat toughening laws fighting fraud in the food sector, increasing surveillance and implementing new technologies to ensure food security, as may be applications block chain for food traceability.
Even so, It looks like it has not been enough because during the last days of a video shot in a supermarket in China has become viral to show a piece of lamb in a tray, opening and manipulated, which he was unveiled only a layer of animal fat without any muscle tissue. What apparently was lean it was actually a pantomime made with colored foil.
So it is no wonder the news coming from the Asian giant: in an unprecedented move in the environment restoration and promomovida by the government of the nation, It has been installed system surveillance over 800 restaurants.
The system, comprises a total of 1700 objectives has become operational in the district Minhang Shanghai city. It is a pilot project established by the Office of Supervision and Management Market which aims to ensure the welfare of consumers.
Far from being a simple monitoring system, the network camera is connected to a computer with artificial intelligence capable of interpreting various parameters. Some of the metrics that a close watch is kept to ensure food security are the moisture contained in food (injections to prevent water or the like, and to ensure that the optimum condition Item), temperature (which will safeguard the cold chain at all times) and practices employed by the staff working with food.
further, Face recognition is another facet of this security system. Thanks to its advanced technology may issue alerts if someone outside is detected to business operations within the kitchens. This particular measure is designed to eliminate cases of corporate sabotage.
These warnings appear on a centralized screen that will present all kinds of information to civil protection bodies to make compliance with the law if this is breaking.
The idea is to monitor each workspace to ensure that 2.5 million inhabitants in the district are eating out of their homes without worrying about the quality of food they will eat, very complicated thing today because of the history of scandals that occurred throughout the country.
Network cameras became operational earlier this year and since then has already issued numerous warnings. Fortunately, almost all of them are due to minor infractions. A good percentage of cases involve chefs perform their jobs without adequate clothing: sometimes lack the cap, the masks and other, Of course, there are cases in which both pieces of clothing are left aside.
A number of cases are due to working conditions or improper storage of ingredients. cold storage at high temperatures or too cases where the room humidity is so high that favors mold growth.
Sometimes also unwanted visitors found in the kitchen: the rats amok through the city, and occasionally they have the nerve to enter the kitchens to arramplar with food in their path. Restaurants that have received the rodents have had to open its doors soon after inspectors Supervision Bureau.
These 1700 new cameras are added to the other 170 existing million and currently. Number pales in comparison to government projections put the final figure around 400 million 2021.
With a surveillance network of this size, China wants to stimulate citizen surveillance system in which the inhabitants have credits in the style of Nosedive from Black Mirror.
With the excuse of food security and combating fraud associated, really worries Chinese, It continues spurring one dystopian future where there are already some cases of retaliation for opposition to the government in private settings.
Given the interests of the Chinese government it is logical that its facial recognition system and artificial intelligence modules used in this food monitoring network installed in restaurants is Shanghai one of the leading worldwide. While what company is not known it is behind this project, Recently the company SenseTime Seated in China has become the undisputed leader in this industry. Some analysts suggest that it could be responsible, but all suspicions have character of rumor and so far nothing has been confirmed officially. SenseTime if indeed behind this Herculean infrastructure, soon the camera network could be improved with a new software further refined by leading codenamed Viper.
As events unfold, We hope that the health of the citizens of China sees beneficiary of all this technological investment.