How AI Can Help with Food Safety and Quality Issues

April 21, 2023
Barbara Castiglia


AI has become a big topic recently, as more companies and businesses use it and play around with the possibilities. As the technology becomes more accessible, more people will use it in different ways and the tech will no doubt advance. Because of this, many are expecting businesses to keep using AI, especially when their leads can increase and call times and cost reductions drop dramatically. It might make sense for some big companies, such as tech and writing based work, to utilize AI technology. But what about restaurants? How can a restaurant utilize AI technology in a way that improves customer satisfaction while also ensuring food safety?

On this episode of The Main Course, host Barbara Castiglia talked with Elizabeth Spears of Plainsight, an AI technology company that works with restaurants. Spears explains that AI technology can help with food safety and other things that go into managing and maintaining a restaurant. She says that AI technology for restaurants is used mainly for three things: “Improving operational efficiency, meeting customer expectations and…increasing revenue or decreasing cost.” And when it comes to AI replacing employees, Spears notes “In almost all of our use cases, we’re actually using the AI to help an existing person.”

Spears and Castiglia also discuss:

1. How AI cameras can visually track data over time.

2. How AI tech works for both franchise and independent restaurants.

3. How quickly Plainsight works quickly to deliver results.


“Plainsight provides the unique combination of AI strategy, computer vision platform, and deep learning expertise to develop and oversee computer vision solutions for businesses,” says Elizabeth. “So for the restaurant business, this typically means using cameras—and they can be existing cameras—to drive top and bottom line gains.” She also defines “computer vision” as “take any kind of visual data, like a camera feed, and train an AI model to be able to automatically recognize what’s in it.”

Elizabeth Spears is the Chief Product Officer and Co-Founder of Plainsight. She attended and graduated from UCLA. During her time as a student, she was an intern at a tech company, later working there for four years after college, and getting involved with early AI technology. She has worked for companies such as Alelo and Google before founding Plainsight in 2020.

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