3D Printing is taking the world by a storm leaving no industry untouched, suffice to say that the food industry is one of them!
Although it may sound like something from a sci-fi movie, food 3D printers do actually exist. Restaurants all around the globe have started venturing into incorporating the endless possibilities of 3D Printed food in their businesses.
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So what are 3D food printers?
Most food 3D printers use extrusion 3D printing technology to deposit layers of raw material in a process known as additive manufacturing. The latest generation of 3D food printers is much more complicated — combining nozzles, powdery material, lasers, and robotic arms to make sugar sculptures, patterned chocolate, and latticed pastry.
Basically, any type of fresh food can be 3D printed as long as it’s a paste, or “purée”. For instance, ingredients could be chocolate, candy and sugars, or pancake batter or cookie dough, or dairy products, pasta, wheats and grains or even fruits and vegetables. Even pizza can be partly 3D printed!
For Nigerian cuisine, the food printers haven't been introduced and cannot make things like soups, but can be employed to make cakes, pancakes or spaghetti of any size, with amazing precision.
Benefits of printing your food
Edible 3D printing can be less time-consuming than traditional cooking. Indeed, users can launch a food 3D print and move on to other activities. Once the food 3D print is launched, there is no more need for manual operation.
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Food 3D printing enables users to customize their food according to special events or simply to their mood. It can vary from writing a name on a birthday cake to 3D printing a heart-shaped pancake, for instance.
Edible 3D printing enables users to unleash even more creativity in the kitchen. Users can imagine and actually create intricate designs. Amazing 3D printed food artwork already exists!
However, the 3D printers are very expensive and most cannot afford it for personal use yet.