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SMS: Where did this come from?

Find out more about where the food came from [or] more about the food source itself by texting into the number on the item. Built on Tom Hulme's clever idea (so good) about using QR codes on food, that, when scanned, takes you to the farmers website, etc.

Photo of Sina Mossayeb
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I think that various foods could also have SMS short codes [e.g., Send TEXT to 008323] on them that people can text to in order to receive:

(1) a MMS [i.e., visual] picture back onto their feature phone showing the patch or range or farm of where it came from with some info about it - so you don't need a smart phone [OR]
(2) a link to a website of farm/source of the food [OR]
(3) a fun fact about the food (e.g., did you know that chickens lay eggs every 2 days)

This could easily be integrated into Tom's idea and also be framed within Sean Hewens' idea of making a sticker that marks local farmer goods.

Image of "Sustainable" was created by Sean Hewen.


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Photo of Fei Xin

I really like this idea. Though this idea that people can know where the food come from? Such as we can know eggs from which farms, whether eggs are enough fresh, so it is guarentee for people's health. I am looking forward to know more development about that.

Photo of Meena Kadri

Nice one – for it's simplicity with add-on goodness. When it comes to eggs I've got to admit I'm pretty lucky with neighbours who have chooks and a plentiful supply – plus my doctor who delivers a batch from his hens periodically. Actually we were just wondering today whether folks who haven't had poached eggs which have been laid the same day realise what they're missing out on.

Sorry for the diversion – this is great. I'd also like to be able to PXT message (or something?) back to the producer so I could show them what I had made with their eggs/etc. Could that be more of an instagram thing?

With many concepts that are emerging I'm seeing a directional tendency for consumers to discover producer stories, etc. Being one of the people who's often emailing, texting, calling 0800 numbers, tweeting and so on to let producers know I love their products (& occasionally to give them constructive tips on upping their game) I'm keen for some of these concepts to consider how feedback loops might be featured.

Photo of DeletedUser


You should definitely look at the mobile health space for further inspiration. Check out and

Both of these systems use SMS to fights counterfeit drugs in the many parts of the developing world. With a simple text in to a short code, consumers can see if they are buying legitimate pharmaceuticals.

I can imagine an application in food consumption as well. See where your food is coming from, or how "natural" it really is.....

Photo of Arjan Tupan

Very practical idea. Funny you took eggs as a picture example. Did you see my inspiration about the egg code that is quite common in Europe? Every egg has a code printed on it so that it can be traced back to a producer through a website.
This concept, of course, is much more extensive than that. You could also imagine another parallel approach in which you can text for example the regular barcode and get an answer back for the producers that do not want to print all this on their products/packaging.