Technology

Hatco, Ovention partner with Nala Robotics on automated pizza system

The system will be able to prepare, cook and store pizzas. It’s being pitched to QSRs, ghost kitchens and convenience stores.
Hatco locker
Hatco pickup lockers are the last stop on a new automated pizza system. / Photo courtesy of Hatco Corp.

Three equipment suppliers are joining forces  to create a robotic pizza system for restaurants.

Hatco, Ovention and Nala Robotics are each contributing to the fully automated system, which can prepare, cook and store pizzas.

The process will start with Nala’s AI-powered robotic arm, which prepares the dough and adds sauce, cheese and toppings. The pie then heads into one of Ovention’s high-speed conveyor ovens. On the other side, Nala’s robot slices and boxes the pizza and then stores it in a Hatco pizza locker, which can hold the pies for up to 45 minutes.

The system has a 10-foot-by-10-foot footprint. The companies are marketing it to convenience stores, fast-food places and ghost kitchens looking for an additional revenue source.

Nala

A pizza version of Nala's robotic arms will prepare, slice and box the pies. / Photo by Joe Guszkowski

“This compact solution allows operators to easily increase revenue 24 hours a day, seven days a week with minimal or no additional labor costs,” said Nala CEO Ajay Sunkara in a statement.

Operators can customize dough, topping and sauce options. The companies have not yet announced how much the system will cost.

Hatco locker

Finished pizzas will be stored in Hatco lockers, which come in both countertop and floor formats. / Photo courtesy of Hatco Corp.

Robots have become an intriguing solution for restaurants as they work to do more with smaller staffs. There are a number of companies focused on automating pizza specifically, including Picnic, Piestro and Stellar Pizza.

Illinois-based Nala unveiled its pizza robot, the Pizzailoa, over the summer. The bot can also be configured to make fries, wings and other items.

The Nala/Hatco/Ovention creation will make its debut at the NAFEM equipment show in Orlando next month.

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