AI chefs may seem like they belong to a far-off future, however, IBM and McCormick may have taken us one step closer after the two companies announced a partnership to use AI to create new flavors in food product development.
The AI-enabled platform, named "One", uses the technology to learn and predict new flavor combinations using "hundreds of millions" of data points from sensory science, consumer preference and flavor palettes. It combines IBM's expertise in AI with McCormick's knowledge of consumer taste, including product formulas from the past few decades.
The new range of seasoning blends for proteins and vegetables are expected to be in shops across the US by late-1Q19.
McCormick CEO Lawrence Kurzius remarked: "McCormick's use of AI highlights our commitment to insight-driven innovation and the application of the most forward-looking technologies to continually enhance our products and bring new flavors to market.
"This is one of several projects in our pipeline where we've embraced new and emerging technologies."
IBM vice president of industry research Kathryn Guarini added: "IBM Research's collaboration with McCormick illustrates our commitment to helping our clients and partners drive innovation across industries.
"By combining McCormick's deep data and expertise in science and taste, with IBM's AI capabilities, we are working together to unlock the bounds of creativity and transform the food and flavor development process."
McCormick plans to share the data with its peers globally in the future, with the intent to upscale the technology by 2021.