3D Systems has fully committed to a food 3D printing strategy. After the surprise announcements of the ChefJet 3D printers, which can print sugar structures in full color (and flavor, too), they’ve announced a joint deal with chocolate conglomerate Hershey’s to develop “innovative opportunities for using 3D printing technology in creating edible foods, including confectionery treats”.
That sounds like a chocolate 3D printer.
It’s totally possible. We have already seen the ChocEdge 3D printer, which does just that. It is the most notable chocolate 3D printer available today, but we suspect 3D Systems may build something even more comprehensive.
We asked 3D Systems CEO Avi Reichental whether they’d considered hiring food scientists to assist in the development of the flavor aspect of food printing, and he indicated they had indeed done so. What we didn’t expect was a joint project with a company full of food scientists, Hershey’s.
We cannot understate the importance of taste in the development of food printing. It’s relatively easy to produce 3D structures; that’s been done for decades in a variety of ways. What’s new is the requirement for the printed objects to taste good.
Taste is a science. It requires careful consideration of ingredients, temperature, timing and texture. These are new characteristics for 3D printing that must be investigated and solved.
It seems that 3D Systems has obtained a partner capable of doing so.
Via 3D Systems