Food tech startup Minnow showed off their contactless, asynchronous smart lockers for food delivery at CES 2022 — and The Spoon got a demo and sat down to talk to CEO Steven Sperry.
Minnow began shipping the pods in the last four weeks through Hatco, a manufacturing partner who creates Minnow pods on demand. On one end of the spectrum, Hatco is serving customers where food is picked up, including restaurants, ghost kitchens, and cafeteria operators. On the other end, Minnow is focusing on selling their pods into commercial real estate including office buildings, residential spaces like apartments and condos, and college campus locations — basically, where food is delivered.
While delivery lockers aren’t a new idea, Minnow differentiates by being designed specifically for food. Each pod is insulated, lit from the inside, and includes UV lights and antimicrobial surfaces.
“We did research and found that people don’t like the idea of reaching into a dark space to get their food — they want to know that the space is clean and sterile,” said Sperry.
Not only is the Minnow pod designed for food and strong connectivity with 5G on board, it’s also providing a standardized and easier way for third-party delivery drivers to find a delivery location to drop off food without navigating secure lobbies and elevators, gated entryways or confusing campus maps.
When asked about Minnow’s support model and whether a multifamily property owner would be able to use the Minnow pod “as a service” versus a straight purchase, Sperry responded, “The purchase typically has a SAS component because the device is always connected to our servers and monitored in real-time. We monitor the food continually, we know what’s happening in every pod and in most cases, it’s considered an amenity for the residents of that building.”
The Spoon video crew was able to get a quick demo of a Minnow pod live on the CES show floor — check it out below.