Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Chipotle’s Chippy kitchen robot uses AI to make tortilla chips

Chipotle Mexican Grill has announced its latest digital innovation, Chippy, an autonomous kitchen assistant that integrates culinary traditions with artificial intelligence (AI) to make tortilla chips. The company has partnered with Miso Robotics to customize its latest robotics solution to cook and freshly season Chipotle’s delicious tortilla chips.

Chipotle’s culinary team guided Miso in trailing its technology to maintain the culinary integrity of the brand. Leveraging artificial intelligence, Chippy is trained to replicate Chipotle’s exact recipe – using the same trio of ingredients (corn masa flour, water, and sunflower oil) – to cook chips to perfection. It can then season the chips with a dusting of salt and finish with a hint of fresh lime juice, just like its two-legged counterparts.

It was imperative that the technique remained the same sot the customers receive delicious, crave-able chips every time. Chippy’s AI capabilities will help ensure that Chipotle locations won’t run out of chips during the day.

“Everyone loves finding a chip with a little more salt or an extra hint of lime,” said Nevielle Panthaky, Vice President of Culinary, Chipotle. “To ensure we didn’t lose the humanity behind our culinary experience, we trained Chippy extensively to ensure the output mirrored our current product, delivering some subtle variations in flavor that our guests expect.”

The company is currently testing the AI kitchen assistant at the Chipotle Cultivate Center, Chipotle’s innovation hub in Irvine, California, to see if it can replicate the flavor, texture, and crunch of one of its signature side dishes. Later this year, the robot will be integrated into a Chipotle restaurant in Southern California. The company is leveraging its stage-gate process to listen, test, and learn from the crew and guest feedback before deciding on a national implementation strategy.

“We are always exploring opportunities to enhance our employee and guest experience. Our goal is to drive efficiencies through collaborative robotics that will enable Chipotle’s crew members to focus on other tasks in the restaurant,” said Curt Garner, Chief Technology Officer at Chipotle.

Chipotle already leverages artificial intelligence with its concierge chatbot, Pepper, which ensures guests have an exceptional experience on the Chipotle app and Chipotle.com.

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