April 20, 2021
Restaurant Technology SmartBrief
On the Front Burner
Starbucks and Arizona State University have collaborated to create The ASU-Starbucks Center for the Future of People and the Planet, which will focus on innovation and research. The Tempe, Ariz., center, set to open in December, will aim to find new ways to design and operate Starbucks stores with a focus on environmental sustainability and community-building.
Full Story: Nation's Restaurant News (free registration) (4/15) 
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Ordering food from your phone is part of the "new normal." Learn how restaurants can keep up with the digital demand here.
The Connected Restaurant
Chick-fil-A to deliver via robots in Calif. test
(Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Chick-fil-A is teaming with Kiwibot to test semi-autonomous delivery robots in Santa Monica and some other Southern California cities. The robots are controlled remotely and the company is touting it as a less-expensive and more environmentally-conscious alternative to traditional third-party delivery services.
Full Story: Nation's Restaurant News (free registration) (4/13) 
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Multi-concept restaurant company C3 has debuted Citizens Go, an app that lets users order delivery from any of the company's approximately 15 brands, which include Umami Burger, Sam's Crispy Chicken and EllaMia. The company is using technology from online ordering startup Lunchbox which will allow customers to combine items from multiple menus in a single order.
Full Story: Restaurant Business online (4/13) 
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Recognizing innovation in foodservice
From the acceleration of trends that were already occurring to what consumers are looking for in the "new normal," hear what industry experts, from companies like Buffalo Wild Wings and Chipotle, have to say about the state of innovation in the foodservice industry.
Watch the discussion.
Tech Talk
After owner Joy Wang had trouble finding enough employees to staff Mr. Q Crab House in Hollywood, Fla., she invested in three robots for the restaurant. Human staff members still take orders and interact with guests, but the robots show diners to their tables and deliver trays of food from the kitchen.
Full Story: Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) (tiered subscription model) (4/17) 
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Cybersecurity Update
The pandemic-induced lull in the hotel industry presents a good chance to reinvent best practices in cybersecurity, argues David Christiansen, chief information officer at security company Venza. Personalization is a trend in the industry, but with it come increased security pitfalls, Christiansen notes.
Full Story: Hospitality Net (4/15) 
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Startup Spotlight
Slice, the tech firm created to help independent pizzerias compete with big chains, has raised $40 million in new funding to further develop the company's technology and customer base. Consumers can use the Slice app to find and order from local pizzerias, and the company also provides point-of-sale technology and an array of other services to nearly 16,000 restaurant partners.
Full Story: Restaurant Business online (4/14),  Forbes (tiered subscription model) (4/15) 
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Edible Innovation
Restaurants around the globe have adapted to offer off-premises options that help customers have special dining experiences at home. Chef Dominique Crenn of San Francisco's Atelier Crenn created a seven-course meal with video instructions on how to serve it, while chef Emmanuel Renaut of France's Flocons de Sel offers gourmet groceries with eggs from his establishment's hens and mountain honey from its hives.
Full Story: Forbes (tiered subscription model) (4/12) 
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News from the National Restaurant Association
Execs from Tropical Smoothie Cafe, Taco Bell and KFC discuss supply challenges and the return of sustainability practices. Full story.
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About National Restaurant Association
April prepares her green traffic light and the world thinks Go.
Christopher Morley,
writer, editor, journalist
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