Insider is seeking nominations for the top restaurant tech innovators in 2022

Insider is seeking nominations for the top restaurant tech innovators in 2022
Serve Robotics is testing robot food delivery with several restaurants in Southern California.Serve Robotics
  • Insider is putting together a power list of the top restaurant tech innovators for 2022.
  • Innovators should be helping restaurants and consumers navigate today's economic challenges.

It's been a challenging 2022 for the restaurant industry and the food tech startups that support them.

Diners are visiting restaurants less often amid soaring inflation. Restaurant visits declined 4% in July, compared to last year, according to The NPD Group. Tech-savvy chains like Wingstop and Domino's are now launching steeper discounts than normal to drive traffic.

With venture capital also drying up, food tech startups like Reef Technology, Nextbite, and Lunchbox are reorganizing and laying off workers.

"It is increasingly clear that foodtech is experiencing a market correction," PitchBook said in its latest food tech report. "Public market volatility has essentially shut the IPO window, limiting exit options, while inflation concerns and a tightening monetary environment are giving investors pause."

Still, digital innovation in the restaurant industry is moving forward.


Recent examples include Panera Bread and Popeyes piloting automated voice assistants at the drive-thru. Chipotle is currently testing Flippy the fry cook robot. Restaurants in Los Angeles are using Serve and Coco robots to deliver food. Uber Eats has additionally tapped Nuro's driverless vehicles for deliveries in Texas and California.

Insider is putting together its second annual power list of the top food tech players in the restaurant industry. The power players' list will highlight the dozens of forward-thinkers and innovators behind the scenes that are transforming how restaurants use technology.

Power players will be selected based on multiple factors, including how individuals are helping chains, diners, or food tech startups deal with today's economic challenges, such as record inflation and rising labor costs.

Insider will determine the final list through our reporting.

Please submit your nominations by September 27.