API

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Introduction

Notice for API users

  1. If you need all the database, download it directly from the data page, do NOT scrape the API
  2. Please tell us (contact@openfoodfacts.org or in the #API channel) what you build with the API, it's always great to see new reuses come to life :-)

Before using the API

  • Some products are incomplete.
  • You should ensure your UX tells the final user that the product is not complete, encourage them to exercise caution and/or help complete the product.
  • When doing averages, computations… filter incomplete products to avoid issues
  • Assume the data is not reliable until the product is marked as complete.
  • In general, ensure the user exercises caution (for allergens…) and be upfront about possible risks.
  • By using any part of the API you have read and understood the license.

Current status of the API

Currently the API is used internally for the official Open Food Facts mobile applications (iOS, Android, Windows, and we need help!) and by hundreds of reuses on various topics (Nutrition, sport…) and platforms (iOS, Android…), but does not yet follow good practices in API design.

It is also used by several applications and while not yet stable, doesn't change much.

You can have a look at the source code of the apps (Mobile_App)

Anyone with Swagger (or equivalent knowledge) willing to help us document the API is most welcome :-)

Getting help with the API

You can ask for help on using the API in the #api channel on Slack. Join us to discuss your use case and get help/code from other devs.

READ operations

For more information, see API/Read

Technical details

  • You can do READ operations using the production server.
  • You should use the SSL version of the API. https://world.openfoodfacts.org
  • Please send a UserAgent HTTP Header with the name of the app/service querying, the version, system and a URL if you have one, so that you are not blocked by mistake (e.g. UserAgent: CoolFoodApp - Android - Version 1.0 - https://coolfoodapp.com)

WRITE operations

For more information, see API/Write

Use cases

  • You can add photos and information to Open Food Facts using the API.
    • Letting your users add new products by uploading photos is the most common use case.
    • Several apps already enable more advanced editing. Gamification would be welcome.
  • The official mobile apps can use some help.

A few things

  • Do join the API channel if you intend on using WRITE
  • Do not send copyrighted photos or information using the API. Everything you send is OdBL for the data, and CC-BY-SA for the pictures. If those are not yours (eg from scraping), you bear all the legal consequences.
  • You can create a global account for your app if you don't want to implement Open Food Facts user creation in your app right now. Please report it in #api so that it can be monitored for errors.
  • You should do all your test edits on https://world.openfoodfacts.net (ask for the password on Slack)

Conventions for the API

  • fields that end with _t are dates in the UNIX timestamp format (number of seconds since Jan 1st 1970)
  • fields that end with _datetime are dates in the iso8601 format: yyyy-mm-ddThh:mn:ssZ
  • fields that end with _tags are comma separated list of tags (e.g. categories_tags is the set of normalized tags computer from the categories field)
  • fields that end with a language 2 letter code (e.g. fr for French) is the set of tags in that language
  • fields that end with _100g correspond to the amount of a nutriment (in g) for 100 g or 100 ml of product

Ready made code you can use in your app

React Native: https://github.com/openfoodfacts/openfoodfacts-react-native

SDKs

We have projects to create SDKs for major platforms. If you'd like to help out, please join the dedicated Slack channels.

Please help us bring Open Food Facts to your favorite language by contributing to SDK!

Licence

Open Food Facts is under the OdBL licence (database) and CC-BY-SA (pictures). That has a couple of legal implications, in short:

  • Mention Open Food Facts as the source of the data;
  • Do not mix with other product databases (since you are then required to release them under OdBL, at your own legal risk if you didn't actually own them);
  • Share any additions under the OdBL, back to the community.

Please join us on the Slack channel to discuss the legal and technical side of things :-) (https://slack.openfoodfacts.org)

Roadmap

API/Roadmap

Bugs

Reporting bugs

Do not hesitate to file a bug if you find an issue in the API, or need an improvement!

You can fill in the issue report here on GitHub

Known bugs

Sister projects

Open Pet Food Facts

Open Pet Food Facts behaves just like Open Food Facts. Behaviours may change over time, as we tweak it.

Open Beauty Facts

API/OpenBeautyFacts

Open Products Facts

Open Products Facts behaves mostly like Open Food Facts. Behaviours may change over time, as we tweak it.