US robotics firm claims first multi-cuisine fully automatic kitchen

Nala Robotics crop
Nala Robotics’ kitchen robot system can cook dishes from many international cuisines.

Illinois-based technology firm Nala Robotics is launching what it claims is the world’s first fully-automatic robotic kitchen in Naperville, Chicago which can cook millions of recipes from across the world without any human intervention.

With the help of robots powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), Nala is said to be able to master any dish in a matter of minutes. Nala’s recipe catalogue will offer dishes from chefs and celebrities around the world.

Users can also upload their recipes that are coded and then replicated by Nala. It can also personalise and customise ingredients to the consumer’s liking, or, in the words of the company’s founder Ajay Sunkara “immortalise your grandma’s recipe,” thereby creating a one-stop eatery for every palate, across multiple cuisines.

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On 11 November, Nala opened its first restaurant, One Mean Chicken, offering wings and fried chicken in Naperville’s Mall of India. In that same location, multiple restaurants will also be launched soon with the next being Nala’s Thai 76 and Surya Tiffins which features a South Indian breakfast menu. Sunkara’s expansion plans are to open 10 restaurant locations in 2022 and 100 by 2024. The company also partnered with several celebrity chefs to operate their ghost kitchens that are powered by Nala.

“Nala is the first AI and ML-powered multi-cuisine chef,” explained Sunkara. “Being AI-powered, the robotic chef gets better and better every single day. The more it cooks, the more it’s going to learn and master these recipes. It is built to work 24/7; it doesn’t need a break. It’s easily scalable and trainable. It’s a workhorse.”

While there is much talk about the recent labour shortages in the restaurant industry, Sunkara believes AI could be the answer.

“AI is going to create more quality jobs and entrepreneurs through Nala’s Marketplace,” he explained. “Our Marketplace feature will help home chefs, food influencers, Michelin-starred chefs and anyone with a good recipe to start their own their own ghost kitchen menu without having to spend thousands of dollars to build their restaurants. By simply coding their recipes into Nala’s secure database they can sell their dishes to customers at every Nala location.”

Since Nala can work 24/7, during the off-peak restaurant hours the company also plans to roll out on-the-go pre-packaged foods available at local grocery stores, restaurants and convenience stores. It also plans to offer meal plan subscriptions presenting freshly prepared dishes on demand and in special categories such as gluten-free, vegan and keto among others.

“Man’s food journey started as a hunter and gatherer,” Sunkara said. “Nala Robotics brings us the next evolution in our journey where robots cook and deliver food.”

Tags : nala roboticsRobot
Clare Nicholls

The author Clare Nicholls

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