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Japanese beverage maker Kirin Holdings has reportedly teamed up with researchers at Tokyo’s Meiji University to develop smart chopsticks that can make food taste better.

Smart chopsticks use electrical stimulation to add flavor to food

University professor Homer Miyashita has been studying electrical stimulation for years as a way to change how people experience food and taste. In 2016, he, along with his colleague Hiromi Uehara and Nakamura, were credited with developing a revolutionary electric fork that would make any food taste saltier than it actually is. Last year, he was featured in the project for his Taste of Television (TTTV) project, a lickable TV screen that mimics the taste of various foods. Now, he’s the talk of the internet again thanks to his latest invention, a pair of smart chopsticks that are said to make food tastier.

Smart eating devices use electrical stimulation to somehow deliver sodium ions in food to the user’s mouth through the chopsticks, thereby enhancing the salty sensation. According to a statement from Kirin Holdings, the chopsticks use “very weak electricity – not enough to affect the human body – to make food taste stronger or weaker by regulating the function of ions such as sodium chloride and sodium glutamate.”

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