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May 13, 2021

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1st unmanned eatery to open in June

An unmanned cooking system has been supplying meals to six community canteens in the Hongqiao area and will comprise Shanghai’s first unmanned restaurant in June.

The intelligent catering system based in a building on Weining Road in Changning District features smart ovens, robotic arms and digital cooking programs.

An intelligent oven can cook over 1,000 dishes, while three robotic arms sort raw materials, pack dishes and put them on a conveyor. Another machine can make spicy hotpot and noodles.

A set meal in an aluminum foil box can be completed within three minutes. The robotic arms can also wash all the cookware.

The system is making over 300 dishes for the canteens which mainly serve Changning’s elderly residents.

A meal with two meat dishes and two vegetables costs 15 yuan (US$2.3).

A customer surnamed Gu said the meals cooked by robots tasted as good as those cooked by chefs. “It is cheap and convenient for us,” Gu, 68, said.

The program can offer diet advice or reduce oil, sugar and additives for senior diners, said Liu Yunxi, who runs the smart cooking company. “The system will record the diets of each diner, analyze the balance of nutrition and offer advice.”

Based on the system, the city’s first unmanned community canteen will open to the public in the Hongqiao area in June.

Construction has begun at 1004 Hongqiao Road and the 130-square-meter canteen will cater to senior residents and office workers in the area.

The restaurant’s intelligent cooking system and robotic arms can cook all kinds of Chinese dishes. The arms can steam, boil or fry raw ingredients delivered from a central kitchen according to customers’ wishes.


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