Seattle-based startup Picnic recently revealed a pizza-making robot that can produce 300 pies an hour with very little human intervention.
GeekWire reports that the Seattle-based startup Picnic, which was previously known as Otto Robotics and Vivid Robotics, is one of the latest startups that has attempted to enter the food production automation industry. The firm has focused its efforts on the production of a pizza-making robot which now appears to be almost ready to go to market.
“Food is hard. It’s highly variable,” said Picnic CEO Clayton Wood. “We learned a lot about food science in the process of developing the system.” Journalist James Thorne who was invited to see Picnic’s pizza-making machine, describing it as a “white, kitchen-sized iPhone.”
— James Thorne (@jamescthorne) October 1, 2019
Pizza making machines are not entirely new, but Picnic sets its robot apart in a number of ways. Its machine is much smaller than industrial-sized pizza makers, the recipes can be easily tweaked for each restaurant, and the ingredients used are fresh.
Picnic’s machine is capable of producing 300 12-inch pizzas per hour, much faster than most restaurants could produce pizzas by hand. What sets Picnics robot apart from competitors as well is that certain elements are still left up to the restaurant chefs, such as dough preparation, sauce making, and baking.
Picnic’s business model for the pizza-making system is quite simple, owners pay a regular fee to use the system in their restaurant and in return, they receive ongoing maintenance as well as hardware and software updates. “People are getting more accustomed to the idea of not owning technology because they perceive it to be something that changes quickly. They don’t want to buy a major investment and have it be obsolete in three years,” said Wood.
Kati Fritz-Jung, a former Little Caesars executive who serves as an advisor to Picnic, commented on the future of the firm stating: “The potential for Picnic’s technology is broad-reaching for the pizza and other food industries. Innovations like this will change the way we approach customer service, product quality, operational costs and overall consumer satisfaction.”