Mobile app tracking down toxic additives in food and cosmetics


No matter how meticulously you may be reading product labels at the supermarket, can you be sure that you are updated on complicated code names of chemicals and on the potential health effects of each of the listed ingredients?

Image credit: AENAON/Ingredio

Ingredio is a mobile app designed to help customers make informed choices. It uses a verified chemical database and information for safety of the ingredients derived from the European Commission, the World Health Organization and the US Health Department.

You simply take a picture of the product label, the app traces back each ingredient and presents you with a user-friendly color-coded panel showing potential toxic, allergenic, irritating or carcinogenic effects.

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You can see the overall hazard of the product and, if you’re curious, you can look in more detail into each of the product components and their characteristics. Description, hazard statements, references are all available. In fact, if you just want to check some chemical, you don’t even have to scan a product—just dig in the database!

Ingredio is not confined by barcode registration. It tracks the names of the contents and can be used in 96 countries. It currently supports ingredient recognition in English and French, while its designers are working to support more languages. Ingredio was designed by Dr. Zoe Kournia, researcher at the Biological Research Foundation of The Academy of Athens (Greece) and is already available in beta version.

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