What do Tuscan Chicken, Bourbon Pork Tenderloin and New Orleans Sausage all have in common? They're all new spice mix flavours that have been developed by the world's biggest spice firm using artificial intelligence (AI). But with taste such a subjective experience, can machines really do the job better than humans? And what does this mean for cultures that see spice as a clear token of identity? Spice giant McCormick, which sells spices to consumers but also develops flavours for the food industry, says it spent four years crunching through more than 40 years of flavour-related data, using machine learning to come up with new flavour combinations that human scientists might not have considered.
On some future visit to your neighborhood supermarket, at least a few of the groceries you pick up for that night's dinner party or the next day's lunch will have been designed with artificial intelligence (AI) -- or so thinks IBM. The Armonk, New York company today announced that it's teaming up with McCormick & Company -- the century-old purveyor of spices, seasoning, mixes, and condiments for industrial and home kitchens alike -- to create new flavors and foods with machine learning. The collaboration -- which IBM says was four years in the making -- will see McCormick & Company tap IBM's Research AI for Product Composition tech for AI-derived insights, which IBM claims has already enabled the food company's Consumer and Flavor Solutions divisions to discover new herb, extract, marinade, and stock flavor combinations up to 3 times faster. The recipe-predicting AI, drawing on McCormick's proprietary "hundreds of millions" of data points across sensory science and flavor palettes, will fuel the launch of its forthcoming product family -- One -- which it expects will launch in mid-2019. "IBM Research's collaboration with McCormick illustrates our commitment to helping our clients and partners drive innovation across industries," said Kathryn Guarini, vice president of IBM's industrial research division.
A view of atmosphere as McCormick unveils grill tech. This is something you don't see every day. On Wednesday, the spice manufacturer McCormick introduced an intriguing grilling innovation that lets you DJ your summer soiree and grill burgers at the same time. The mashup of outdoor party activities is called the SUMR HITS 5000, and it allows grillers to create original music tracks while preparing food as spinning LED lights reminiscent of a DJ's turntable illuminate the backyard. The cook can control the beats that guests hear by strategically placing food on the grill grates, and the contraption uses computer vision and machine learning to really elevate the show.
Nobody hops out of bed in the morning, thinks to themselves, "Today, I'm going to invent the next Oreo," and actually follows through on it. Even training in the skills necessary to become a professional food product developer can take the better park of two decades, much less creating and testing the thousands of flavor iterations needed to dial in on the perfect taste that will finally unseat Cool Ranch Doritos. But thanks to IBM's Philyra AI, spice manufacturer McCormick & Company's R&D the team is leveraging machine learning to cut the time it takes to develop new flavors by up to 70 percent. Last October, IBM Research unveiled the Philyra AI as a tool to accelerate the creation of new and novel scents for the fragrance industry. "It is a system that uses new and advanced machine learning algorithms to sift through hundreds of thousands of formulas and thousands of raw materials," Dr.
Spice and herb seller McCormick says it is scrapping its plan to buy British food maker Premier Foods, after takeover talks between the two companies failed. Last month, Premier rejected McCormick's most recent offer to buy the company for about 764 million. McCormick is best known for its spices with bright red labels. The Sparks, Maryland, company also sells Zatarain's rice mixes and Stubb's barbecue sauce. Premier's brands include OXO stock cubes and Mr. Kipling packaged cakes.