Step aside, Chippy, Autocado is here. Chipotle is adding a second robot to its fleet.
On Wednesday, the fast-casual chain announced the avocado processing prototype, dubbed Autocado, is being tested at the Chipotle Cultivate Center in Irvine, California, but the company aims to roll it out to one of its restaurants later this year.
It cuts, cores, and peels the avocados before they are hand smashed by an employee to make guacamole. A spokesperson said it will reduce prep time by 50%. In its restaurants now, the process takes about 50 minutes. Employees now do all the work, from peeling to hand-mashing, to make the guac from start to finish.
Guac is a popular item at Chipotle. This year, the company is expected to use nearly 4.5 million cases of avocados in its restaurants across the US, Canada, and Europe.
Last fall, Chipotle rolled out Chippy, a robot that makes tortilla chips. These two robots are likely just the start of how automation and AI will play a larger role at the burrito chain.
Other restaurants are also increasingly turning to robotics and AI and robotics to cut down on routine tasks. [Read More]