Flying can be a lot of fun, but it can also be a big hassle. No matter if you’re heading to NYC for a business commute, or New Mexico for a well-deserved vacation, you are going to need to fuel up for the flight. That might start with a cup of coffee, but where do you go from there? Do you grab a sandwich? A bag of chips? A smoothie? Maybe you’re in the mood for something quick and nutritional, while also being satiating? If that’s the case, then you will want to meet Sally the Robot the next time that you fly in or out of the Buffalo Niagara International Airport (BUF).
Located across from gate 18, Delaware North’s Sally the Robot is at your beck and call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Sally has a built-in touchscreen interface that allows travelers to access a wide variety of foods, by mix and matching up to 22 ingredients.
Fast Company named Sally one of ’10 Restaurant Innovations Changing the Way We Eat’ and a 2018 World Changing Ideas Finalist.
Sally the Robot is right out of the future, and might even take inspiration from the Star Trek replicator. We initially saw this type of application in the soda world, with the introduction of the Coca-Cola Freestyle soda fountain back in 2009. Apparently it was only a matter of time before a similar concept was introduced to the food industry. At the same time, it’s a lot easier to imagine how the Freestyle soda mechanism works. How the heck does that translate to food?
The personal chef gizmo was created by Silicon Valley-based food robotics company Chowbotics. Customers now have the ability to instantly mix and match ingredients for salads, bowls, and snacks. Customers can also select the amount of calories in a snack or meal (by adding and subtracting items), ultimately walking away with a variety of different flavor profiles that include Mexican, Indian, Chinese, French, and Thai. Sally is also a lot more hygienic than a salad bar – customers don’t interact with the ingredients, and it’s all temperature controlled. That means that there is very little waste, especially in high trafficked locations such as airports. View sample menus here.
“We’re always listening to what travelers are looking for in their dining experience, and healthy options and convenience are always at the top of the list,” said Kevin Kelly, president of Delaware North’s travel division, which operates at more than 30 airports and travel hubs around the world. “This technology is the first of its kind in the airport dining space, and we’re especially excited to bring it to travelers in our hometown of Buffalo as a pioneering location.”
That’s one of the reasons that we love Delaware North so much – the company, headquartered in Buffalo, is happy to use this city as a testing ground for some of its ingenious inventions and products. Remember Chip, the robotic butler?
Sally the Robot might be a familiar face in Silicon Valley, but she’s never made an appearance at an airport… until now.
“We are thrilled to showcase this technology to many people who, until now, may have only read about it,” says Dr. Deepak Sekar, founder and CEO. “Now, they can see and experience Sally, the world’s first commercially-available fresh food-making robot, for themselves.”
While we’re glad to have Sally in Buffalo, we’re also happy to share her with travelers all over the world. And that’s exactly what Delaware North has planned for her.