AAPVL: Food Control on the Internet
Competences from the disciplines of food science, law, information science and computer science were used to develop a detailed concept and a software prototype to search the internet for product offers that violate food law.
The online marketplace for food products is continually expanding and all types of food and beverages can now be purchased over the internet. It is primarily the responsibility of the food business operator to ensure compliance with food safety law. However, the competent authorities are tasked with controlling the e-food sector as part of their regulatory duties to protect consumer health and to prevent fraud, regardless of the sales channel being used. For this purpose, a new software prototype concept was developed that automatically identifies and evaluates potentially non-compliant e-food products. The research tool utilizes both internet search engines and customized search algorithms. A multi-stage filtering process is performed to limit the sites according to defined criteria (e.g., food product merchants only). The data acquisition module stores all matching data from webpages for later analysis and preservation of evidence. In another module, automatic recognition of a site's legal notice (impressum) is carried out for the respective vendor within whose online shop a potentially non-compliant food product is being offered.
Lewandowski, D., Krewinkel, A., Gleissner, M., Osterode, D., Tolg, B., Holle, M., & Sünkler, S. (2019). Entwicklung und Anwendung einer Software zur automatisierten Kontrolle des Lebensmittelmarktes im Internet mit informationswissenschaftlichen Methoden. In: Information – Wissenschaft & Praxis 70 (1), 33-45. https://doi.org/10.1515/iwp-2019-0005
Krewinkel, A.; Sünkler, S.; Lewandowski, D.; Finck, N.; Tolg, B.; Kroh, L.W.; Schreiber, G.A.; Fritsche, J.: Concept for Automated Computer-Aided Identification and Evaluation of Potentially Non-Compliant Food Products Traded via Electronic Commerce. Food Control 61(2016), 204-212. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodcont.2015.09.039
Krewinkel, A.; Sünkler, S.; Lewandowski, D.; Finck, N.; Tolg, B.; Kroh, L.W.; Schreiber, G.A.; Fritsche, J.: Lebensmittelkontrolle 2.0. Journal für Verbraucherschutz und Lebensmittelsicherheit. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00003-015-1000-6
Research data and software
All research data, software and the working papers detailing methods and implementation can be found in the Github repository.
Funded by the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture, 2013-2018