The World’s Biggest Spice Company Is Making New Flavors Using AI

Artificial intelligence is slowly integrating its way into our daily lives. It’s now entering our food supply. McCormick & Co. Inc. is teaming up with IBM to use AI for “flavour and food product development.”

AI will enable the spice company’s product developers to quickly and more efficiently predict new flavour combinations using hundreds of millions of data points generated via sensory science, consumer preference, and flavour palettes, the company said in a release.

McCormick aims to use AI to “develop more creative, better-tasting products and new flavour experiences.”

The company’s first AI-enabled product platform, “ONE,” is scheduled to launch by the middle of the year. It will feature one-dish recipe mix flavours, including Tuscan Chicken, Bourbon Pork Tenderloin, and New Orleans sausage.

The ONE platform is geared towards family-favourite flavours and seasoning for both protein and vegetables. The new flavours will be available in the United States by late spring.

According to McCormick chairman, president and CEO Lawrence Kurzius, AI is just one way the company is using innovation and forward-looking technologies to improve their products and create new flavours. He also noted that it’s just one of many projects that they are working on.

IBM is also diversifying by bringing its technology to other 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 flavour development process,” commented Kathryn Guarini, VP, Industry Research, IBM.

This partnership with IBM has allowed McCormick to come up with flavour combinations three times faster than normal. McCormick intends on incorporating this technology worldwide by 2021.

McCormick had $4.8 billion in sales in 2017, and its products are sold in 150 countries. It co-creates custom flavours for nine of the top 10 food and beverage companies and all top 10 food service restaurant chains worldwide. The company was founded in 1889.


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