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Winnow uses AI to address food waste

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by Startacus Admin

Winnow develop AI tools to help chefs run more profitable, sustainable kitchens by cutting food waste. Here's how...

Winnow Solutions screenMany of us grew up being cajoled into eating all our vegetables or cleaning our plates because there were starving children and adults who were a lot less fortunate than us. It might have seemed like a parenting cliche to teach us about appreciating what we have, however it would be fair to say that it was also in essence teaching us about food waste. And that is an issue which doesn’t stop with a seven year old sitting refusing to eat a plate of brussel sprouts.

Food waste costs the hospitality industry about $100 billion every year, and all the production of the food, the transportation, the storage, the packing, the cooking, the transportation again of the food waste, all costs money, energy, fuel, water, and all so mounds of it can sit and rot in a landfill and produce methane, hugely damaging to the atmosphere. And of course, this is only a very brief and surface-brushing overview of the food wastage problem.

Winnow Solutions logoLondon-based tech startup Winnow is aiming to reduce this food waste as much as possible by making kitchens smarter.

Their platform, Winnow Vision, is AI-driven and built to help kitchens identify waste and where it is coming from, and therefore cut down on it.

The system simply takes a photo of food waste as it is thrown away, as well as weighing it, and learns to identify it and collate that data. Users do need to give input themselves, giving a reason for throwing the food away and identifying what overall dish is being thrown out; however, Winnow says that this takes only 3 seconds each time and about 15 minutes per day, distributed between all staff members.

Winnow is already used by big name hospitality brands like Hilton, Costa, and IKEA. The Bergen IKEA branch has been using Winnow since late 2017, and reports that in just the first 12 weeks, they reduced food waste by 45%, and have saved €126,200 annually. Overall, across 39 countries, Winnow says that it has saved 39,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions, and saved businesses a massive $33,000,000.

These numbers speak for themselves, and Winnow is definitely going on our list of environment-saving startups to keep an eye on!

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Published on: 8th September 2019

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