Food Tech

Why We Need a Pizza Robot

The new Picnic - Pizza Robot
Why We Need a Pizza Robot

The Picnic is creating the next generation kitchen and has started by focusing on the traditional pizza. Right now the current units has a pizzeria hand stretch the dough of the given shop, and then it is put onto a tray to be guided through the machine which can handle over 300+ pizzas an hour if it has an oven or ovens that can keep up.

I have personally watched the machine work it's pizza magic, and this version has only refined what I saw a little over a year ago more. Soon there will be more options to help with the process.  The robot is not just about helping reduce food waste. Not just in 2020, though it is more so now, finding and training a team member is not easy or inexpensive. Having a machine that can handle the most routine part of the process, combined with the part with the highest food cost and waste such as cheese and toppings, helps keep an operators margin in line. While at the same time allowing that same current or future team member to focus on front of the house, where they can provide more value to the customer exeperinece. Picinic let's big and small operators benefits as most fast casual shops have more than a 100% turnover rate per year.

Picnic is deisnged to reduce food waste and spoilage

Since Picnic is built to let you make the best pizza possible, while keeping your costs in line they have thought about how they want to work with their customers in the same way. There are no large upfront costs with Picnic, they are a Robot as a Service business, that will change how food service automation can be implemented. A pizza shop pays a fee to have the machine up and running with full software updates, and mantiance as part of the fee. The pandemic has been an opprutity to show operators how they need to focus on keeping spoilage down, and how re-hiring and retraining has been an ongoing challenge, which is why Clayton Wood has said that "supporting struggling restaurants who are looking for any advantage that will help them weather the storm of losing 60% of their sales and by surviving through this, they’ll be in a position to re-hire lost workers" is critical to Picnic's mission with their robot as a shrive approach.

“Picnic can make up to 300 pizzas an hour, and more limited by the oven than anything else at the moment”

The current model is capable of making pizzas form 8 to 18 inches gives the platform a lot of versatility it will allow it to function in any size shop. We have talked with the team for well over a year as we have followed their progress. The system can be paired with any type of oven, so it is oven agnostic, and takes on the profile of the pizzeria just as if it were part of the team.

More recently in 2020, Picnic has raised an additional $3 million from their existing investors, including Arnold Venture Group, Creative Ventures, Flying Fish Partners,Vulcan Capital, and more, which is a follow up found to a $5 Million dollar round in 2019. The current round is to help Picnic gears up for a large commercial rollout of the  robot in 2021.

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