A.I. and Food

Artificial Intelligence is a catch-all term referring to automated systems that can make decisions. It describes a wide range of technologies from speech recognition to language translation to image recognition. AI systems are powering apps used across the food system to diagnose plant disease, analyze cow herd health, optimize food ordering and merchandising, and track diet and exercise.

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  • Food Production

  • Food Distribution

  • Food Consumption


  • Food Production

    Food Production

    Across the country, farmers are using AI tools to harvest exceptional crops and increase their yields with fewer resources. The processing power of AI offers faster—and sometimes cheaper—solutions for collecting and analyzing multiple sources of data that are also used to generate reports directly from the field.

  • Food Distribution

    Food Distribution

    The emergence and growth of digital grocers and online grocery shopping platforms are disrupting traditional supermarket business models and contributing to the decline of brick and mortar grocery stores. Predictive ordering algorithms are helping traditional and digital grocers to increase efficiency and reduce food waste, while direct-to-consumer shopping platforms and delivery services are opening up new possibilities for accessing fresh, healthy foods, even in food insecure communities.

  • Food Consumption

    Food Consumption

    New technologies are changing the way we eat, from image recognition apps that estimate nutrition content to automated food logs and fitness trackers. Researchers are also devising AI-powered tools to track and contain food poisoning outbreaks and identify sources of contamination. These advances are supporting improvements in public health overall.



About Us

Refresh examines the intersection of technological innovation and the U.S. food system through research, storytelling, and collective action. The project is funded by Google and led by Swell Creative Group.

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