In this special edition of its 5 Things series, Food Management highlights five recent technology-related developments affecting the foodservice world.
Here’s your list for today:
1. Towson University debuts new 24/7 store
Towson University has announced the grand opening of Tiger Express, which it says is the first checkout-free college store in the U.S. to combine Zippin’s checkout-free technology with Atrium’s campus card management solution. Offering round-the-clock, frictionless shopping for a variety of essentials, including snacks, drinks, packaged meals and personal care products, it allows OneCard holders such as students, faculty and staff to choose between paying with Dining Dollars or Doc Dollars along with credit cards.
2. CBORD passes out Excellence Awards for tech achievement in foodservice
Foodservice tech firm CBORD has announced the winners of its 2023 Excellence Awards. The 2023 Visionary Award winner is Corewell Health while the University of Missouri-Columbia and Western Connecticut State University shared the One CBORD Award, Leon Eck at the University of Notre Dame won the Tech Trendsetter and Chris Carr, Amy Light and Abbie Williamson from WakeMed Health & Hospitals received the Ambassador Award.
3. White Castle deploys kitchen robot
White Castle has teamed up with Miso Robotics to deploy Flippy 2, an advanced kitchen robot, across various locations. This move comes after a successful pilot with the original Flippy robot in Chicago, marking a significant step in automating fast food's most repetitive tasks.
4. Chipotle testing automation solutions
Chipotle Mexican Grill is testing technology that will automate some of the operations in its restaurants. An automated digital makeline, recently installed at the company’s test kitchen and design lab, assembles burrito bowls, potentially offering increased capacity and improved speed and accuracy, said Brian R. Niccol, chairman and chief executive officer.
Read more: Chipotle testing automation
5. Smoothie shop that customized orders using AI has closed
BetterBlends, a downtown San Francisco smoothie shop that offered drink recommendations based on an artificial intelligence prompt, has closed. The concept blended each drink based on recipes generated by the same technology as ChatGPT based on a few questions for customers. After scanning a QR code, a customer could state their preferred milk, any allergies and use keywords, such as “keto” and “detox,” to create a recipe. A “remix” created a new recipe that the AI engine still matched to a prompt. Each mix came with a blurb and nutrition facts.
Contact Mike Buzalka at [email protected]