The pizza robot revolution is kicking into high gear in 2023, and various sectors of the restaurant industry are getting into the act. In the latest development, Nala Robotics has partnered with Ovention, Inc., a high-speed oven manufacturer, and Hatco Corporation, a leader in foodservice equipment, to create a compact, fully autonomous robotic pizza-making system.
The system is designed for quick-service restaurants, ghost kitchens, convenience stores and other commercial settings. On display at this year’s NAFEM Show (booth No. 612), taking place February 1-3 in Orlando, the joint solution combines Nala Robotics’ cooking automation and design technology with Ovention’s Shuttle Oven and Hatco’s Flav-R 2-Go Pizza Locker System within a 10′ x 10′ footprint.
“This compact solution allows operators to easily increase revenue 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with minimal or no additional labor costs,” Nala Robotics CEO Ajay Sunkara said.
The all-in-one pizza-making unit can be configured to include variations of dough, sauces and toppings. The AI-based robotic arm selects and presses the dough, adds the sauce, cheese and toppings, and cooks the pizza in an Ovention oven. The pizzas are then sliced, boxed and stored in Hatco’s Pizza Locker System.
“Our collaboration with Nala Robotics provides a new cooking, storage and delivery solution to meet the changing needs of our customers and the marketplace,” said Casey Reilley, director at Ovention, a subsidiary of Hatco Corporation. “Whether it’s for a ghost kitchen, convenience store or gas station, consumers are given a greater amount of convenience and flexibility with their food options, while creating additional revenue for operators.”
The locker systems are described as “ideal for pick-ups, third-party delivery and to-go orders.” They have several custom features, including:
- Built-in, countertop and floor mount models to fit commercial operations’ setups and holding needs
- QR code readers and touchscreen controls that simplify orders from the point-of-sale for both operators and customers
- Each locker has a timer to hold pizzas for up to 45 minutes, with a preset temperature of 149°F (65°C) and a high temperature range up to 180°F (82°C). Heat can be adjusted for ambient food holding.
- A variety of Hatco’s Designer colors to match décor