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Brief Published: 2 Jun 2015

Smart Food Label App

Sage digital food label

New York designer Sam Slover has created a smart food labelling system that generates personalised information labels for consumers based on their sex, height, weight and activity levels.

Users sign up to Sage, a web app, and enter their details. The system then creates its own nutritional labels based on the users’ personal data. This works both for individual branded food products (there are currently 2,000 on the site’s database) as well as meals that the user enters manually into the app.

For example, an analysis of non-fat Greek yoghurt visualises the product’s nutritional value, providing a breakdown of each ingredient. Fibre, vitamins and minerals are highlighted as ‘Get Enough’, while less nutritious ingredients like saturated fat, sodium and sugar are labelled ‘Avoid Too Much’ or ‘Careful’. Serving sizes and allergies are also taken into account to highlight any problem ingredients.

The app can also map out the geographical origins of ingredients to allow users to track the carbon footprint of their food. Users can also create visual collections of food products that suit their dietary requirements and needs.  

Designers are beginning to create new labelling systems that aim to decode confusing food labels for consumers. For more on this, see New Directions for Food Labelling.

Similarly, tech-savvy brands are developing digital dieting tools that allow users to track their calorie intake as well as monitor the nutritional content of food, as discussed in Calorie-Counting Tech Tools and Next-Gen Dieting. For more on tech-enhanced dietary tools, see Tech Recipes, Intelligent Vending, Smart Chopsticks and Smart Kitchen Scales