Two research engineers from the embedded and communicating systems department at CETIC, Yassine Bassi and Arnaud Palgen, took part in the European RESTwithEU Hackathon held in Madrid on June 17 and 18, 2023. With their team, "Waste Busters", they won the first award at the event, with a special prize of €6,000 for their proposal addressing the challenge of "Reducing food waste in the restaurant sector" .
RESTwithEU is an European pilot project aiming to deliver a sustainable restaurant sector by 2030 through the digitisation, identification and development of tools and solutions that meet the needs and diversity of the restaurant sector challenges.
The hackathon took place over 2 days at the La Nave innovation center in Madrid. The aim was to come up with elaborated ideas for digital solutions to the challenges faced by restaurants. Participant profiles ranged from software engineers to food industry professionals and restaurant owners and entrepreneurs.
The teams were sorted in order to cover 4 challenges:
The Waste Busters team has come up with a proposal consisting in a food stock monitoring platform for restaurants. This platform will collect, in real time, various product-related data such as status and expiry dates. These data are then used by an artificial intelligence system to suggest recipes to chefs, enabling them to make the best use of the products in their stocks.
As an applied research center, CETIC is used to contributing to the ideation, requirement analysis and prototyping activities in the context of research and innovation projects but also in industrial collaborations. Its expertise in the field of digital technologies is transferred to companies active in various application domains. CETIC also has previous experience related to digitisation in the restaurant sector, mainly through its collaboration with the SGL: Smart Gastoronomy Lab to enable flexible, and automated data collection and structuring for their connected tray.
Within this scope, CETIC is developing DMWay, a lightweight and embedded software solution capable of aggregating and standardising data from a variety of heterogeneous sources in the field.
DMWay addresses a central issue associated with the deployment and maintenance of IoT solutions today, namely the challenge of efficiency in managing the evolution and scalability of installations in terms of number and type of technologies instantiated. Thanks to its flexible, modular and configurable architecture, DMWay makes it much easier to set-up, exploit and maintain IoT data flows in almost any typical business digitisation approach.
This technology could be applied to the restaurant sector to collect the diverse data about ingredients, which would be useful for implementing the Waste Busters concept proposed in the hackathon.
The Waste Busters team keeps in touch to see how the award could be used. Contacts are also underway with entities interested in implementing the proposed concept.