Miso Robotics announced global commercial availability of the Flippy Robot-on-a-Rail (ROAR) – a zero-footprint, cost-efficient intelligent robotic kitchen assistant for the evolving commercial kitchen. Flippy ROAR hits the market with advanced cooking capabilities to quickly learn menu items, allowing operators to appeal to new customers and retain eaters with consistently cooked options. As the restaurant industry looks to reopen and regrow in a post-pandemic world, Miso Robotics plans to offer financing options through TimePayments to empower food service providers to quickly adopt automation technology – now mission critical for addressing ‘new normal’ challenges such as indoor staffing and dining limitation, the need for enhanced health and safety standards, and improved margins as delivery and takeout increase in popularity.
Earlier this year, Miso unveiled a prototype enabling Flippy to glide across multiple workstations on a rail. The final design for global commercial availability mounts Flippy on an overhead rail (ROAR), keeping it out of the path of busy kitchen staff to increase safety and throughput by interacting with a food hopper capable of dispensing the perfect amount of food for preparation before moving to the cooking station. New backend advancements to ChefUI, Miso Robotics’ proprietary software, assist kitchen workers with operational interactions and workflows through an easy to navigate dashboard view of the web-based application displayed on a 15.6” touchscreen monitor mounted on the ROAR system.
Through the dashboard, employees can see the foods in line to be prepared next. Capable of identifying current temperatures, predicting time remaining to meet consistency in taste perfection, and alerting staff of unsafe internal cooking temperatures, ROAR features powerful image processing and depth perception from Intel® RealSense™ technology. Enabled by Intel® RealSense™ Depth Camera D415, ChefUI can not only identify food and temperatures, but can also learn and reclassify new foods introduced to Flippy. Staff can also opt to change cooking times and alter portion sizes for foods coming out of the hopper to map back to customer customization requests.
“Intel RealSense technology is used to develop products that enrich people’s lives by enabling machines and devices to perceive the world in 3D,” says Joel Hagberg, head of product management and marketing, Intel RealSense Group. “We are excited to be a part of the new Flippy ROAR design that delivers new automation and intelligence to the restaurant industry.”
Along with enhanced camera, thermal sensing and UI capabilities, Flippy ROAR makes new advances in machine learning to quickly adapt to new menu items – jumping to include 19 (and counting) total food items to its frying abilities, and adding the Impossible Burger to Flippy ROAR’s grilling skillset. With a different patty make-up than the traditional burger, Impossible Burgers require special cooking care to lock in the flavor and taste that has escalated them as a new menu item favorite across quick service restaurant chains and independent operators. The combination of advanced computer vision and deep learning software Miso Robotics has brought to their latest design is able to account for differences in texture and thickness of the Impossible Burger, in real-time, adjusting grilling technique to achieve perfection.
Adapting to new food trends is key for operators looking to attract customers and stay competitive as delivery and takeout explodes to offer customers a wider pool of restaurant choices amid the pandemic. Operators reopening are being faced with smaller margins, less foot traffic and new health and safety concerns. The need to minimize the risk of contamination and scale production with limited staffing options due to social distancing concerns – quickly – has never been more important for the industry. With that in mind, Miso Robotics’ brings Flippy ROAR to global commercial availability with NSF International (NSF) certification. An independent, global public health organization that certifies products to regulatory standards and protocols, NSF ensures health and cleanliness standards are incorporated into new product designs.
“Certification to NSF/ANSI food equipment standards mean Flippy ROAR meets rigorous requirements for material safety, hygienic design and performance,” says Sara Risley, associate managing director of food equipment at NSF International. “The NSF mark signifies Miso Robotics’ commitment to health and safety – providing reassurance that the product can be easily cleaned to prevent foodborne illness and won’t leach harmful chemicals into food.”
Flippy ROAR gives operators a certified product to decrease human contact in the cooking process and recent partnerships with PopID and Pathspot will further bring less contamination and spread of viral infections to future kitchen environments. With Flippy ROAR, production speeds increase and social distancing concerns in the kitchen are quickly addressed. Staff are able to shift to front of the house roles where needs have increased for customer service-oriented activities like heavier and regular cleaning regimes, delivery and takeout order fulfillment, and outdoor ordering and hosting.
“We’re are incredibly excited to announce global commercial availability of Flippy ROAR,” adds Mike Bell, CEO of Miso Robotics. “After we shared a sneak peek of the prototype in January, we’ve seen demand through the roof from operators, especially in light of COVID-19. Miso Robotics is confident that this demand will set us up for success and provide the automation the industry needs to not only recover but accelerate growth.”
To help operators tackle regrowth challenges immediately, Miso Robotics has partnered with TimePayments to offer financing options for immediate access for Flippy ROAR. Miso Robotics will also evolve their robot-as-a-service model to include cheaper upfront cost Flippy ROAR and a manageable monthly software fee for operators.