How to Trust The Food That You Eat

This blog article was guest written by LFA Intern, Kyle Curtis.

How do we know where the food we eat comes from?  How can we learn how our food is made? A new application called TRusT™ connects eaters with the answers.  TRusT™ is a mobile application where the customer is able to discover where their food comes from, how it is made, and where it is distributed.  The TRusT™ app puts a QR code on a product.  Through the application, users take a picture of the TRusT™ QR code and information regarding that item appears

Giuseppe Biagini with the International Traditional Knowledge Institute brought a team over from Italy to educate American food producers and consumers about TRusT™.   Stefano Ravizza, an owner of Italy’s Il Torrino Farm a vineyard producing wines, jams, and jellies, is a user of the application.  Ravizza comments, “With the QR Code from TRusT™, you have the possibility to tell the story of your products, and make your customer aware of the professionalism, and passion that lies behind the making of a bottle of wine; you can tell the story of yourself, and your land with just one click. With TRusT you create a transparent link with your customers.”   The application tells the history and source of ingredients, allowing the customer to understand the heritage of their food.

Biagini and some of his team showcased the application at the recent SAVOR Southern Arizona Food + Wine Festival.  The sold-out culinary festival put together by Local First Arizona, the Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance (SAACA) and Tucson Botanical Gardens featured over 70 local restaurants, winemakers, brewers and food educators.  TRusT™ connected with producers and consumers who are hungry to be in the know about where their food comes from.  Biagini hopes that TRusT™ is not just a tool for providing education about modern food systems but also a mechanism for preserving traditional knowledge about heritage foods.  He noted that as UNESCO’s first North American City of Gastronomy, Tucson is the ideal starting place for these conversations in the United States. The city of Tucson is about 12,000’s years old and the food we eat has a colorful history and origin, with continuous agriculture in this region dating back as far as 4,000 years.  

The TRusT™ application is a method of applying principles of heritage conservation to awareness of food and agriculture.  Just taking a flour tortilla for instance, and considering the history of those ingredients in Tucson, shows that flour played a key role in the development of the burrito. Products made from white Sonoran wheat showcase a grain only found in the Tucson area.  The story of this wheat connects the community with the tortilla’s flavor and the food’s history.

To learn more about how individuals can use and download the TRusT™ application, visit them online. Food producers with an interest in featuring their products in the application can email [email protected]  The TRusT™  application is an important resource to connect people with the food they eat.