May 7, 2024 - World

A food company is using AI to help save endangered sea turtles

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Part of the NotCo kitchens and a glimpse at a green sea turtle. Source: via Telemundo

A Chilean food company is using artificial intelligence to help save endangered sea turtles.

Why it matters: Green sea turtles are an endangered species, having lost 90% of their population in the past 50 years.

State of play: NotCo, a food tech company for plant-based alternatives, has been using an AI program developed in-house to analyze plant flavors and find recipes that emulate the taste of dairy and meat products.

  • Last week, the company shared the first of its recipes focused on substituting an endangered species.
  • The recipe uses plant-based foods instead of green sea turtle meat for sopa de tortuga, a popular dish in some coastal areas of Latin America and Asia.
  • Peruvian chef Diego Oka, who is based in San Francisco, gave the AI the prompt for the recipe and then fine-tuned it over the course of two weeks.

What they're saying: "If it only takes that long to replicate the flavor by matching humans with technology, this isn't just an alternative to using an endangered species — it shows the world we can do so much more," the company said in a statement.

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