Kraft Foods’ Dinner Decider Studies Your Face, Suggests (Kraft) Food Choices Based on Gender, Age

Next time you’re hungry, but unsure what to make for dinner, don’t despair — Kraft Foods has some ideas for you. Are you a mom? KraftBot calculates that you need Mac ‘n’ Cheese. Is it game day? KraftBot wants you to make queso dip, so here’s a barcode for a brick of “cheese product.” Are you a hung over college dude? Take the Cheez Whiz and Ritz crackers.

Or maybe you’re morbidly obese. Go ahead, pick between a box of South Beach Diet fiber bars or a gallon jug of Hidden Valley Ranch — the choice is yours, shopper. Just as long as it’s Kraft, and only Kraft.

Based on Intel’s Connected Store interactive shopping platform, Kraft developed a dinner-deciding kiosk that uses video analytics to determine what you want for dinner. The kiosk debuted at the 2011 National Retail Federation trade show this week.

Walk by the digital sign and a camera zooms in on your face to determine your age group and gender, suggesting Kraft products you might find appealing. The system can also factor in time of day — if it’s time for some Lucky Charms, or if you need dessert made of Jell-O and Cool Whip.

A touchscreen allows you to scroll through “top picks” based on your demographic profile, and you can supplement its assumptions by scanning a store discount card or your mobile phone shopping list. It’ll also recommend Kraft-based recipes, varying them based on the type of meal you’ll be having.

Oh, and if you’re not sure you really want some Oreos, even though the all-knowing kiosk specifically recommended them, the kiosk will whet your appetite by giving you a free sample.

The idea is to help people make dinner choices more effectively (if not more healthfully), reports Fast Company. Average Americans apparently have a pretty limited recipe repertoire, relying on basics like spaghetti, hamburgers and pizza, and Kraft’s VP for retail experience explains that 70 percent of shoppers enter a grocery store with no idea what to make for dinner that night.

Intel’s Connected Store program aims to build customer loyalty and increase revenue by providing a pleasant, interactive shopping experience, the company says. Let’s just hope that the store doesn’t run out of Mac ‘n’ Cheese. Because everybody likes Mac ‘n’ Cheese.

Fast Company