If it’s one thing we’ve all learned during this pandemic, it’s the importance of hand washing. And one group of people in particular you want washing their hands frequently are restaurant workers.
To help restaurants ensure that the people handling your food are properly handling their hygiene, Miso Robotics announced a partnership with PathSpot today in a move the companies say will “advance sterile and healthy cooking environments.”
Miso Robotics is the company behind Flippy, the burger-flipping, fry cooking robot, while PathSpot makes a device that lets restaurants scan employees’ hands to ensure proper washing (i.e. no poop hands). The two might not seem like the most obvious bedfellows at first, but both companies are the in the business of automating kitchen processes.
At first, the Miso/PathSpot relationship will be around cross-selling. So any discussion Miso has with a potential QSR client could include the addition of a PathSpot device. But Dr. Ryan Sinnet, CTO of Miso Robotics told me by phone this week that the agreement is multi-stage and as it progresses there will be opportunities for dataflow and other technological integrations between the two systems.
Today’s announcement follows a partnership Miso announced in March of this year with PopID to install thermal imaging cameras at a Caliburger location (all three companies count Cali Group as an investor). These thermal cameras will take the temperature of customers, employees and delivery people entering the restaurant to detect if anyone has a fever. In addition to these fever scanning capablities, the PopID kiosks can be used for contactless payment which relies only on facial recognition.
While all of these technologies have been around for a couple of years, they could find accelerated interest in a post-COVID-19 world. As restaurants start to re-open in some parts of the country, they are doing so with new regulations meant to help prevent any potential resurgence of the virus. Scanning employees for fevers and their hands for cleanliness, using a robot to cook food and having customers pay with their face may have seemed downright dystopian just a few months ago. But in a post-pandemic world, they may be the new normal to try and protect wary customers and tentative businesses.