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New York-based ScanAvert (www.scanavert.com) launched its ScanAvert mobile application — which can be used on iPhones and select mobile phones — to give consumers a means of detecting harmful or specified ingredients in food, beverages, and OTC drug products, supplements or vitamins that may cause an undesired reaction or unhealthy consumption, on a real-time automated basis, in any place where those items are sold, prepared, or served.
To use the app, consumers register for the service on ScanAvert’s Web site and create a profile from the allergy, prescription, dietary requirement/restriction, and illness categories. They may also establish limits on any of the nutritional values, such as carbohydrates, fat or calories.
As the item’s bar code is scanned via the user’s cell phone (an auto-focus lens is required), its corresponding ingredients are compared to that consumer’s profile. If a product’s composition is incompatible with the profile, an alert is generated identifying the substance(s), accompanied by proposed compatible substitutes across the phone’s screen.