Not content with securing the food supply chain with blockchain technology, IBM has turned its attentions towards food product development.
The tech company has teamed up with flavour specialist McCormick & Company to pioneer the application of artificial intelligence (AI) to develop new spice blends.
Using IBM Research AI for Product Composition, McCormick aims to usher in “a new era of flavour innovation and changing the course of the industry”.
McCormick’s product developers will be able to explore flavour territories more quickly and efficiently using AI to learn and predict new flavour combinations from hundreds of millions of data points across the areas of sensory science, consumer preference and flavour palettes.
This, McCormick said, will allow it to develop more creative, better tasting products and new flavour experiences across both its Consumer and Flavour Solutions business units.
McCormick expects to launch ‘ONE’, its first AI-enabled product platform, by mid-2019, with a set of initial one-dish Recipe Mix flavours including Tuscan Chicken, Bourbon Pork Tenderloin and New Orleans Sausage.
The company’s flavour developers created this product platform by combining IBM’s expertise in AI and machine learning with McCormick’s own 40+ years of proprietary sensory science and taste data.
“McCormick’s use of artificial intelligence highlights our commitment to insight-driven innovation and the application of the most forward-looking technologies to continually enhance our products and bring new flavours to market,” said McCormick Chairman, President and CEO Lawrence Kurzius.
“This is one of several projects in our pipeline where we’ve embraced new and emerging technologies.”
Kathryn Guarini, VP, Industry Research, IBM, said: “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 flavour development process.”