Lotte Confectionary hires IBM Watson for new Pepero lineup

2017.09.27 16:11:50 | 2017.09.27 16:12:46

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Lotte Confectionary Co. released new lines in its popular Pepero flavor-dipped stick snack upon guidance from IBM’s artificial intelligence Watson, the first collaboration of its kind in the industry.

The South Korean snacks manufacturer said Wednesday it has launched two new flavors - kakao nibs and calamansi yogurt - for its popular biscuit sticks based on Watson’s consumer trend analysis.

The company has been looking for ways to use AI in the confectionary industry after teaming up with the U.S. tech giant in December. It said it wanted to leverage AI technology to gain deeper insight into potential consumer needs regarding taste, ingredient and texture.

Using IBM Watson, the firm collected over 10 million pieces of information online for 80,000 products. The supercomputer then analyzed the data based on exposure frequency and relevance and sorted by category the ingredients and flavors that are currently or likely to be popular among consumers.

Potential hit ingredients in the food category were beer, cheese and chili pepper. In the snack and chocolate categories, these were found to be hazelnut, strawberry, cocoa, cacao nibs and calamansi.

By Lee Hee-soo

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