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App to put more power in consumers’ hands, Colbeck

Senator Richard Colbeck has welcomed news of the launch for a mobile phone app designed to help consumers make better buying decisions.

The GS1 GoScan app, developed by GS1 with the support of a range of partners – including members of the Australian Food and Grocery Council, and major supermarkets – will be launched in Sydney next week.

The development of such an app was a recommendation of the Senate Inquiry into the Food Processing Sector chaired by Senator Colbeck last year.
“This is a very welcome move,” Senator Colbeck said. “The new app creates the platform to provide much more information to consumers with more than 8000 products already listed.

“One of the issues regularly raised during debates has been the space available on packaging to provide information. This application has the capacity to deal with some of those ‘real estate’ issues and present additional information in a more accessible format.
“Another powerful feature is the capacity for consumers to send requests to manufacturers for them to list their products on the app database, if they have not already done so, or for more detailed information. Customer feedback can directly drive the provision of information.”
It also could provide more detailed information around seasonal variations to ingredients without the need for manufacturers to make constant label changes.
The app has a range of features including:
• personalised alerts for allergens, dietary and lifestyle requirements;
• country of origin information;
• detailed definitions and additional information on GM and irradiation;
• access to brand owner promotions and competitions;
• links to brand owners’ websites, Twitter and Facebook pages; and
• voiceover support for people with visual impairment.

“All of this without any reduction in the information already on the label,” Senator Colbeck said.
SENATOR THE HON RICHARD COLBECK Senator for Tasmania Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Fisheries and Forestry Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Innovation, Industry and Science

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