AI will take Picadeli's salad bars to the next level
"We are doing everything we can to create the world's most easy-to-manage food concept and with our new AI platform, we give customers a completely new experience," said Jonas Landström, who is responsible for the new platform at Picadeli.
The food sector has a turnover of more than 1.2 trillion euros and is Europe's largest industry. Despite the size of the sector, it has not been digitized to the same extent as other industries. It has taken longer for food companies to use technology to develop their business models and value chains. Greenfood-owned Picadeli is an exception. They were early in using technology to ensure both food safety and product quality and facilitate the daily operation for store staff. Today, Picadeli's digitized salad bars are available in over 2,000 stores across seven European markets.
“We have taken a huge digital step forward with our new AI platform. Our connected refrigerated counter gives us data about each individual product, which enables accurate calculation of what the store should order to keep a fresh salad bar. In simple terms, through algorithms, we help those who run the salad bar to order the right products in the right quantities,” Jonas Landström, Head of IT and Business Development at Picadeli, said.
The new AI platform, Arcorder, calculates order recommendations based on, among other things, planograms, current inventory levels and sales history, as well as external factors such as weather forecasts and holidays. All to maximize availability while minimizing waste. To ensure that the store’s knowledge is utilized, the system has a modern interface where customers can see exactly how everything has been calculated and what the consequences will be if the order proposal is changed.
“We are convinced that the combination of AI-based forecasts and the stores' solid experience will give us the best solution. Our system works like a digital assistant. It will be both easier and more fun to have an attractive salad bar and consumers will have a better experience,” said Landström.
Arcorder began development a year ago and has, in recent months, been tested in around 30 stores on several markets. Initial scepticism from customers was quickly changed by the fact that now they could not even consider going back to the old way of working, mainly due to major savings in time and a huge reduction in wasted food.
Picadeli has built its own dedicated software team and developed the Arcorder solution internally. It is built with serverless technology on Amazon's cloud infrastructure, which makes it easy to scale up to meet the demands of both large food chains and new markets in Picadeli's continued expansion.
About Picadeli's salad bar, Arctic
Picadeli’s patented salad bar, Arctic, offers a wide assortment of fresh salad ingredients that consumers can mix themselves. The digitized salad bars send real-time information about, among other things, the products' durability and possible temperature deviations. Hygiene-focused design solutions such as automated hand disinfectant, hanging tools and hoods for maximum protection, together with the digital monitoring system and a patented cooling system, provide maximum food-safety and a very fresh salad concept.