May 17, 2020

AB InBev Commits to Cutting Emissions in Logistics Operations by 15 Percent

AB InBev
Frazer Jones
2 min
Budweiser (AB InBev) logistics in action [source:]
Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev) is making big promises in the name of conservation. The beverage giant has announced that it plans to reduce carbon emis...

Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB InBev) is making big promises in the name of conservation. The beverage giant has announced that it plans to reduce carbon emissions in its logistics division by an impressive 15 percent before the end of 2017.

According to reports, AB InBev is focusing on all aspects of its supply chain to meet this goal – inbound transportation, outbound transportation, and warehousing will all be subject to analysis and sustainability measures. Some of the measures that AB InBev plans to implement are more efficient fleet vehicles and partnerships with suppliers and other supply chain partners with strongly efficient best practice protocols. The brand is also researching fuel alternatives for further efficiency down the road.

This new conservation goal comes as an add-on to AB InBev’s current Social Responsibility goals first set last year against the targets it was able to reach in 2012. In addition to this new carbon emissions goal, AB InBev’s social responsibility goals improving water management in key barley growing regions, reducing global water usage down to 3.2 hectoliters of water per hectoliter of production, and working with local stakeholders to implement watershed protection strategies in all of its key production areas including China, Brazil, and the US.

While AB InBev’s plans to cut carbon emissions are good for the environment, they are also good for AB InBev’s own bottom line – the brand has reportedly calculated that, if its logistical improvements all go to plan and meet expectations, the resultant cost savings could add up to $200 million by the end of its 2017 timeframe. If AB InBev is successful in achieving these goals, the goals it sets for the next five years should be even more impressive.


Read more about AB InBev’s social responsibility goals here:



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Jun 21, 2021

McDonald’s Drive-Thru attendants replaced with AI

Helen Adams
2 min
AI is ready to take orders from customers at McDonald's in Chicago and a nationwide rollout is likely

Fast food goliath McDonald's has trialled an AI voice recognition system at several drive-thrus in Chicago, USA, expanding from the one single test in a restaurant launched a few years ago. 

As the price of food rises, businesses look for ways to save money and cutting out entry-level jobs, such as drive-thru attendants, is one option.


AI helps businesses, but threatens jobs

In the post-pandemic era, utilising AI technology seems like a sensible idea. AI outperforms human labour in a number of ways:

  • AI drive-thru attendants do not get sick, do not need sick leave, parental leave, holidays, weekends or time off
  • AI do not require payment and cannot set up a Trade Union
  • AI do not have rights
  • AI cannot be late for work
  • AI can be cleaned and remain more hygienic than humans


For these reasons, many are concerned that AI could take away job opportunities.

At 16, Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and the richest man in the world, took his first job in the fast food franchise. Bezos said he became grateful for the experience of working under pressure and that the role also taught him about being a good manager. Employing AI in such roles will mean less people get to learn from these entry level jobs. 


AI accuracy lacking at McDonald's

McDonald's purchased the drive-thru voice technology from the startup Apprente in 2019.

Apprente creates speech-based AI businesses. The business “delivers enterprising solutions for a broad range of customer service applications that presently necessitate human interaction”.

But the AI technology used in the McDonald’s drive-thru so far, is reportedly only 85% accurate and one fifth of orders need help from a human to put through. For customers with specific dietary requirements, this could lead to problems in order mix-ups. 

Regardless, CEO Kempczinski has estimated five years before a national rollout.

"There's still a lot of work, but (...) we feel good about the technical feasibility of it and the business case," Kempczinski said in a conference transcript from FactSet.

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