Food wish fulfilled? Genie launches next-gen pod-based cooking system

And I thought microwave ovens were weird back in the day. Now, it looks like a Keurig-style system for cooking food is about to hit the market, promising a magical cooking box that can replicate a chef’s stylistic flourishes, including hydrating, whisking, mixing, cooking, heating, boiling, and steaming — all with a meal-specific routine depending on which bar code is stamped on the night’s meal.

We’re talking about the compact Genie device, a pod-based gizmo that’s been kicking around since 2014. It looks like it’s about to come to market, based on the fact that its Israeli inventors are giving early access to business-to-business (B2B) customers, as well as promoting pre-orders.

First, it’s way smaller than a microwave, or even a home coffee machine. Secondly, this robotic cooking system that seems to be a healthy fit for a smart home uses healthy, tasty and natural ingredients.

“Genie delivers everything that matters to food eaters, including taste, nutrition and convenience,” said Genie Enterprise CEO and co-founder Ayelet Carasso-Sternberg in a release. “What’s quick shouldn’t compromise quality. What’s delicious should also be nutritious. What’s good for you should also be good for the planet. That’s why we created Genie. With a push of a button, Genie cooks nutritious and delicious meals in a snap.”

Genie says that it already has more than 30 menu items/meal pods ready to go that can cover breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert and every meal in between. It’s been a while since the privately held company has made the news but it’s been previously reported that the desktop cooking device can engage with a bunch of different ingredients such as couscous and vegetables, chicken with rice, and ramen. The pods are rumored to combine freeze-dried fruits, vegetables, and meats with raw ingredients like herbs, spices and grains.

The product was created in 2014 by a diverse team of engineers, designers, entrepreneurs, and scientists in a lab outside Tel Aviv. Originally planned to target specific locales like offices, hotel rooms, hospitals, and other quick-serve food destinations, the company is now clearly aiming for a wider audience based on its launch announcement.

“We solved major food technology and preparation barriers by cooking all-natural, delicious, nutritious, and sustainable food fast and effortlessly,” said Doron Marco, Genie Enterprise chief technology officer and co-founder.

The Genie appears to use smart algorithms to recognize each ingredient in a meal pod and treat it appropriately. Patented A.I. and machine learning technologies augment the system to help owners instantly make nutritious and sustainable food. The team has a bunch of nutritionists and dietitians on staff, not to mention world-class chefs, so this is a pretty interesting alternative to a lot of fast-serve food options out there.


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