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Winnow uses machine learning in new waste device

Winnow is using AI technology found in driverless cars to help chefs cut food waste and save money.

The waste solutions provider this week launched Winnow Vision, a device that features an inbuilt camera that helps it learn to distinguish different foods.

Winnow has been working on the new technology since 2017 and tested it in a commercial setting in January 2018 with partners IKEA and Emaar Hospitality Group.

Using a camera, a set of smart scales and the same type of machine learning technology found in autonomous vehicles, Winnow Vision learns to recognise different foods being thrown in the bin and calculates the financial and environment cost to commercial kitchens.

Unlike the original Winnow device that required users to manually input different foods, the new device can already recognise most food items and can be trained to learn other menu items in any kitchen.

The device is already installed in over 75 kitchens and Winnow said the technology would be rolled out to hundreds more this year.

“By understanding and reporting food waste’s very real costs – both to the bottom line and the environment – Winnow Vision empowers chefs to take action. Using technology that learns and improves with each use, Winnow Vision has the ability to tackle food waste on a global scale,” said Marc Zornes, CEO of Winnow.

Winnow claimed its technology could slash the volume of food waste, which it said costs commercial kitchens between 5% and 15% of all food purchased, with some kitchens wasting up to 20% of all the food they buy.