Constant advances in technology mean the packaging industry is evolving every year. Being on the frontier of innovation is a role we’re happy to play at Ernest Packaging Solutions, and we have plenty of predictions about how the future will shake out thanks to new inventions in manufacturing. One technology we’ve got our eye on is automation, and thanks to the subject of today’s blog, we’ve got our stomaches on it, too.
“Flippy” is a lean, mean, burger-making machine. Created by Miso Robotics, Flippy is a robotic arm that’s perched atop a kitchen cart. Outfitted with grippers, tongs and scrapers, the machine comes to life when wheeled in front of a grill top. Flippy monitors each hamburger patty using cameras and sensors, flips them when needed, and places them gently on the bun when prepared. It even has the good manners to clean off the grill between each batch!
A robot that can grill 150 burgers per hour sounds pretty valuable to have around the kitchen, and investors agree — to the tune of about $13.1 million in funding. While that money will go to improving Flippy’s chef credentials, there’s one thing that it will never be able to do: give service with a smile. That means the robot’s co-workers can rest assured they won’t get relegated to cleaning duties.
Thankfully Flippy isn’t intended to replace human workers, but rather to help them when the going gets tough. “The kitchen of the future will always have people in it,” assures the co-founder of Miso Robotics. “But we see that kitchen as having people and robots.” Accordingly, they describe Flippy as a “kitchen assistant” who can produce standard orders, rather than a replacement for its fellow workers. For those of you with special requests or who like your burgers pink or well done, human cooks still have your back!
The goal of automation is to let repetitive tasks fall into the cold, clammy hands of robots, and leave the more complex concerns to living, breathing people. When orders start to pile up and human workers are crunched for time, that’s when Flippy powers up and pitches in. That’s a big help for the fast food industry, but how can automation affect the packaging world? You’ve already been given a sneak peek.
Ernest Packaging Solutions is dedicated to Moving Packaging Forward. The heart of that commitment is keeping our clients at the forefront of technology, and automation services have proven to be a great path forward for many industries. In our case study. “Ernest Equips Boman Kemp for Success,” you can see how innovation in our client’s packaging process is saving them time and money every single day.