McCormick products developed with AI technology from IBM Research will hit the market by mid-2019
HUNT VALLEY, Md. and YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY, February 4, 2019 — McCormick & Company, Incorporated (NYSE: MKC), a global leader in flavor, and IBM (NYSE: IBM) today publicly announced their ongoing research collaboration to pioneer the application of artificial intelligence (AI) for flavor and food product development.
Using IBM Research AI for Product Composition, McCormick is ushering in a new era of flavor innovation and changing the course of the industry. Product developers across McCormick’s global workforce will be able to explore flavor territories more quickly and efficiently using AI to learn and predict new flavor combinations from hundreds of millions of data points across the areas of sensory science, consumer preference and flavor palettes. This proprietary, cutting-edge technology sets McCormick apart in its ability to develop more creative, better tasting products and new flavor experiences across both its Consumer and Flavor Solutions business units.
McCormick expects to launch its first AI-enabled product platform, “ONE,” by mid-2019, with a set of initial one-dish Recipe Mix flavors including Tuscan Chicken, Bourbon Pork Tenderloin and New Orleans Sausage. The company’s flavor developers created this product platform by combining IBM’s expertise in AI and machine learning with McCormick’s 40+ years of proprietary sensory science and taste data, which includes decades of past product formulas and millions of data points related to consumer taste preferences and palettes. AI has enabled McCormick’s product developers access to an expanded portfolio of flavor profiles that enhances their creativity. The new ONE platform was specifically developed to deliver family-favorite flavors with the ability to season both the protein and vegetable. The new seasoning blends expect to be on U.S. retail shelves by late spring.
“McCormick’s use of artificial intelligence highlights our commitment to insight-driven innovation and the application of the most forward-looking technologies to continually enhance our products and bring new flavors to market,” said McCormick Chairman, President and CEO Lawrence Kurzius. “This is one of several projects in our pipeline where we’ve embraced new and emerging technologies.”
As a world leader in artificial intelligence software, services and technology for business, IBM is focused on working with clients and enterprises across many industry sectors to help advance data-driven technologies that push markets forward.
“IBM Research’s collaboration with McCormick illustrates our commitment to helping our clients and partners drive innovation across industries,” said Kathryn Guarini, VP, Industry Research, IBM. “By combining McCormick’s deep data and expertise in science and taste, with IBM’s AI capabilities, we are working together to unlock the bounds of creativity and transform the food and flavor development process.”
Pairing McCormick’s global expertise, particularly that of its research and product development teams, with leading AI research helped McCormick accelerate the speed of flavor innovation by up to three times and deliver highly effective, consumer-preferred formulas. Through the ONE platform as well as several other projects in the pipeline, McCormick’s product developers are now using AI to unlock creativity, access new insights and share data with their peers around the world. The company plans to scale this technology globally by 2021.