Artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies have started playing a key role in several industries. Research and development in this field are making steady progress and venturing into new industries and covering new tasks. The brewing industry is one such industry.
The brewing industry, like many others, started off with using AI in their functions such as marketing and supply chain. It helped them to identify the right audience and target advertisements. AI was used to collect real-time information on how people reacted to their creatives and change them to achieve maximum impact. Machine learning is also being used to deal with distributors. It helps to identify the right time to send and the right amount of stock to send to a particular distributor. It also arrives at the best credit terms after analyzing all risks.
However, these were supporting functions. The effort now is to incorporate AI in one of the most crucial functions, the brewing of beer. This lies at the crux of the industry.
AI is being used in different capacities by different producers in the industry. While many are still at the research stage some have hit the market.
AI to determine the recipe:
While brewers have been experimenting with the recipe to brew beer over years, AI can help them to incorporate customer feedback effectively. Some chose to use a simple algorithm of comparing recipes of 10 best and 10 worst beers in the market to arrive at an optimal one. Some companies have chosen to actually go ahead and collect consumer data. IntelligentX produced 4 different varieties of beer and asked them to provide feedback. They had collected over 1,00,000 data points which were used to zero down on the recipe to brew beer which consumers like.
AI to serve beer:
It was observed that the foam while serving beer made a difference to the taste, so AI was used to develop a robot that could do this task accurately. Videos of the robot serving beer with different levels of foam and beer colors were shown to participants and data about their likability was collected to arrive at the best combination. The robot can now be used to ensure that the foam level stays consistent and customer experience is standardized.
AI to brew beer:
AI is being used to predict the quality of beer by analyzing the data collected during brewing about CO2 levels in real-time. Data is collected at different stages. Some companies are also attempting to use data to predict fermentation. Real-time analysis can help save a lot of effort and improve the accuracy of the process. This accuracy can help the industry to save on energy, costs and time. Giants like Ab InBev have dedicated research teams to work on these lines.
The Beer brewing process is seen as a mix of art and science. While the infusion of AI in the process of brewing can add precision and take care of the scientific side, it allows the brewers to experiment with their recipes and develop the craft of beer brewing.