Guest Column | October 26, 2015

How Artificial Intelligence Can Help Food Processors Feed The World

By Pieter Willems, technical director, TOMRA Sorting Food

As an industry, we face some formidable challenges in ensuring there is enough food to feed the world’s growing population. Food security is high on the international agenda with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, estimating by 2050, feeding a global population of 9 billion will require a 70 percent increase in food production. So, what technologies can food processors implement to meet this high demand?

Already, advances in automation and robotics are making the global food manufacturing and processing industries more efficient, productive and safer. But, the supply chain has to become smarter and even more innovative than it is now if it is to deliver higher quality and quantities of food in the future. In essence, our processes have to become more intelligent. Until recently, Artificial Intelligence (AI) was something only read about in the pages of science fiction. Now, our lives have been transformed by robotics and AI — more than we could have ever imagined only a few decades ago. The technology is used in a wide array of day-to-day services, as well as being applied to tackle some of the world’s greatest problems.

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