3D Printing: now printing food too

TNO demonstrated foodprinting using 3D printing methods during the Food Inspiration Days 2012 (Eindhoven, October 2012) and at the Gastronomy trade fair (Utrecht, November 2012).

3D printing is an innovative manufacturing process whereby an object is built up, layer by layer, from a 3D computer design, using for example, printing technology or lasers.

These methods can be used for the production of objects made from a single type of material as well as combinations of materials in which each material is deposited, for instance, by a separate print head. An example of a 3D printing system with several print heads is the PrintValley machine recently developed by TNO.

This kind of technology will lead to new types of production systems for the manufacture of complex multi-material products. Applications for this can be found among a whole range of sectors like electronics, solar cells, lighting and food.

By combining and merging all the many different disciplines it has at its disposal, TNO can offer uniquely innovative, sustainable solutions such as food printing that make use of this multidisciplinary approach, combining knowledge of mechatronics, 3D industrial printing and specific food knowledge in the areas of ingredients, formulae, texture and structure.

Why food printing?

Food printing offers a range of potential benefits:

  • The technology can help to convert alternative ingredients such as proteins from algae, beet leaves, or even insects into tasty products that are not only healthy but also good for the environment.
  • A food printer opens the door to fully personalised food since products can be made that are perfectly in tune with individual needs and preferences.
  • The printer can also ensure that your personal meal is made at exactly the right moment in time so that you come home to a fresh, healthy meal.
  • Finally, printing food allows enormous freedom of design in terms of not only the 3D shape but also the composition (the ingredients and their ratios), structure, texture and, last but not least, taste. Unique new products can be developed that other methods simply cannot emulate.

Interested in 3-D printing?

Please contact Kjeld van Bommel

GET IN TOUCH!
Contact

Dr.Ir. K.J.C. (Kjeld) van Bommel
+31 88 866 54 49
Contact me

extra information
Need help finding something?