Chipotle's Autonomous Kitchen Assistant To Make Tortilla Chips

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Mexican casual fast food chain Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) Wednesday announced that it is testing a new autonomous kitchen assistant that uses artificial intelligence to make tortilla chips.

The company said its culinary and technology teams are working along with Miso Robotics to customize its latest robotic device, which is called Chippy, to cook and freshly season Chipotle's delicious tortilla chips.

"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, Chipotle.

The company says that Chippy is trained to replicate Chipotle's exact recipe - using corn masa flour, water and sunflower oil - to cook chips to perfection, season with a dusting of salt, and finish with a hint of fresh lime juice.

"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."

Chippy is currently being tested at the Chipotle Cultivate Center, Chipotle's innovation hub in Irvine, California and will be integrated into a Chipotle restaurant in Southern California later this year.

"When Chipotle challenged us to see if our technology could meet the brand's high standards for culinary quality, we couldn't wait to flex our engineering and design muscles," said Mike Bell, CEO, Miso Robotics. "This partnership will allow us to move into new territory to help improve back-of-house functions and assist team members with their day-to-day responsibilities."

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