Community notices

New salad robot serves up fresh meals at SFU’s Burnaby campus

October 27, 2021
Photo Credit: Kobie Huang

Sally the salad robot has arrived at Simon Fraser University’s Burnaby campus. The first of its kind in the Lower Mainland, Sally offers 24/7 fresh, nutritional and customizable food options for students, faculty, and staff.

The new robotic vending machine, located in the Academic Quadrangle, allows users to create their own meal using any combination of up to 22 ingredients, resulting in thousands of meal combinations. Users will also have the option to select from a number of chef-crafted, pre-programmed salads and grain bowls with just the touch of a button.

Sally’s customizable options and instant nutritional information means users will have the ability to fine-tune their meals to meet dietary needs and preferences by adding or subtracting individual ingredients.

"Students are always looking for healthy, affordable food options on campus,” says Ayomide Gbadamosi, a fourth-year SFU student. “Having additional food options like this that are fast and customizable is very convenient for students looking for a meal between classes.”

Created by California-based company Chowbotics – a robotics startup recently acquired by DoorDash – Sally is just the latest addition to a growing array of new and healthy food options available on SFU campuses.

“SFU Food is committed to providing healthy food across campus, and that includes more nutritious and convenient options for our community, and we’re excited that Sally’s innovative technology can help us further this goal,” says Dan Traviss, director, SFU Food.

Maintained by Parminder Parhar, owner of Renaissance Coffee, Sally is regularly restocked with fresh produce and fixings. All ingredients are stored in a sealed, temperature-controlled environment, keeping them fresh longer, which helps reduce food waste and ensures meals can be made at all hours of the day.

To-date, the company has installed the robots in more than 350 locations, including hospitals, universities, grocery stores and offices.