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IBM and McCormick Are Using Artificial Intelligence to Create New Spice Blends

The next time diners send their compliments to the chef, they may actually be thanking artificial intelligence.

IBM and McCormick, a company known for selling spices and condiments, are teaming up to create new all-in-one spice packets that have a high tech backstory.

McCormick provided IBM with 40 years of taste data, including customer preferences and flavor palates. The platform, called “ONE,” then sifts through that data and uses machine learning algorithms to identify for patterns and potentially tasty combinations humans may not yet have considered. Some of the flavors the AI has helped create include New Orleans sausage, Tuscan chicken, and bourbon pork tenderloin.

IBM said its AI is so precise that it can recommend substitutes for a formula, the appropriate ratio of spices to be used in a blend and can even predict human response to the taste.

The technology could also be applied to other sectors, including “cosmetics, fragrances, detergents, adhesives, lubricants and construction materials,” according to a news release.

IBM first stepped into the kitchen a few years ago when the company used its famous supercomputer, Watson, to create a recipe app that spit out wild new cooking ideas, including flavorful salad combinations and in some cases, total fails, such as the suggestion of putting mayonnaise in a Bloody Mary.