A Dublin food delivery company will soon use drones to deliver food to a university next month.
Ben & Jerry's Manna's drone delivery pilot program can deliver ice cream and Thai food in three minutes. In a version of "farm to drone to table," the drone delivery company Manna plans to replace road delivery and deliver Thai food and Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream to University College of Dublin students in a fraction of the time that traditional delivery would take.
Their website explains:
"Using custom-developed aerospace grade drones, we deliver directly from restaurants and centralised kitchens to consumer's homes. We fly at an altitude of 80 metres and a speed of over 80kph – delivering within a 2km radius in less than 3 minutes.
Our 'Manna-festo' is to completely replace road-based delivery – reducing delivery times to a fraction of their current times, greatly improving the consumer experience of food delivery, and saving lives as we take the dangerous process of road-based delivery into the skies."
The much discussed "last mile" is done with the drone hovering about 10m above the ground while the package is lowered to the recipient on a biodegradable linen string. The process takes a matter of seconds. Manna is partnering with Just Eat, takeaway company Camile Thai, and ice cream icons Ben & Jerry's.
Manna CEO and founder Bobby Healy said drone delivery provides a faster, cleaner, safer, cheaper and higher quality alternative to road-based delivery. "We are excited about how that will improve the world."
Amanda Roche-Kelly, Managing Director Just Eat Ireland said they were delighted to be involved in the trials with Manna.
"Transforming the business of food delivery as we know it, this coming together of two complementary services will greatly improve the delivery experience for our customers and further adds to the countless ways we connect people with food, everywhere. We are just so proud to be Ireland's first online food ordering and delivery platform to provide a commercial drone delivery offering to our customers."
"This technology will transform online food marketplaces, restaurants, dark kitchens, and communities globally," Mr Healy added. "The Irish Aviation Authority have been a tremendous help and guide over the past three years, working together we have ensured that our drones are extremely safe in all operating conditions. We look forward to working with regulators around the world as we bring this innovative technology to customers across the globe."