An improved fringe-adjusted joint transform correlator based technique for optical color pattern recognition is proposed. In this proposed technique, a joint color image is processed through three channels. The joint power spectrum (JPS) of each channel-component is obtained by Fourier transform operation. The JPS of the individual channels are then added to obtain the overall JPS. After applying the Fourier plane subtraction to the overall JPS, it is passed through a color fringe-adjusted filter to produce excellent correlation discrimination. The implementation complexity is reduced as the filtering and the inverse Fourier transform processed through only one channel. Opto-electronic implementation of the proposed technique is presented that can be applied in real time color pattern recognition for practical applications.