Taiwan User-Friendly Sensor and Tech (TFT), a current startup team coached by Taiwan Startup Institute, will be officially launched in April next year. Three experts in the medical testing field founded the company.
For a long time, that have cooperated and partnered to help the public avoid the immediate health hazards that food allergens may cause. At the same time, they are optimistic about the huge market potential behind food allergies and decided to explore the potential business opportunities and value of this market.
Wen-Hao Chen, founder and CEO of TFT, pointed out that food allergies have become a present-day epidemic. Many people are allergic to foods like peanuts, nuts, seafood, milk, etc. Almost 34 million people in the United States have severe symptoms of food allergies. Reactions to allergens in food cause one hospital visit every 3 minutes in the U.S., accounting for 22% of all emergency patients.
According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of the U.S., the annual cost of health care for food allergies is about US $25 billion.
Currently, common food allergen detection technologies mostly use a fast-screening test, similar to the pregnancy test, so the test result is only “yes” or “no,” but cannot meet the needs of users with different physical conditions.
In response to this, the food allergen detection system introduced by TFT fills in this gap and uses medical-level detection technology to further test the actual amount of allergens in food, helping different users effectively ease the allergic symptoms.
Wen-Hao Chen mentioned that this food allergen detection system combines nanotechnology to enable the fastest process of detection in the industry (up to 2 minutes), and achieves high quality and high sensitivity performance with a limit of detection (LOD) of 1ppm.
The team also uses AI and big data analysis technology to create a cloud monitoring system and personalized applications for long-term tracking. Users can easily track and manage the date of detection through mobile apps.
At present, there are many types of allergens, with gluten as the hottest topic among them. Even ordinary people have begun to focus on gluten-free foods, and thus created the rising market of gluten-free food. In the U.S. alone, the market size reached US $9 billion in one year.
Given this, TFT will start from gluten, in the beginning, to enter the allergen detection market, and then gradually expand to other allergens such as peanuts, milk and nuts. “We have recently reached a cooperation agreement with GF Heavys, a well-known gluten-free food supplier in the U.S., which serves as a great starting point for our next expansion to gluten-free factories,” Wen-Hao Chen concluded.