3D Printing Food?

Coming to a kitchen near you: 3D printed food! While 3D printing food is not a totally new idea, researchers at Columbia University are looking into making it better. They are currently trying to figuring out a way to heat the food while its printing.

According to this video, they plan to make 3D food printers with lasers to heat the food, instead of more traditional cooking methods.The ingredients that go into this machine are the same ingredients used to make regular food, so the concept truly isn’t that foreign. Using the laser will make the cooking more accurate than that of an oven or microwave, down to about a millimeter. While the 3D printer seems like something only a top chef would use, they hope that in the future everybody will have a 3D food printer in their kitchens. They plan to make this 3D printer relatively affordable, thus changing the way we cook today. If implemented, this could affect various food industries. Why go out for a fancy meal when you could make it at home for less money?

When could you expect to see this in stores? The technology has not been picked up by any big businesses quite yet, so it could be a long time before we could see these in our everyday lives.

So enjoy your microwaved mac ‘n’ cheese for now, the future is coming soon.


4 thoughts on “3D Printing Food?

  1. I think 3D food printing is efficient and convenient. People might argue that food printing might have health hazards or its not fresh but in reality, these innovations are capable of working with any kind of food. The printer is customizable depending on the person and uses food-safe materials. You can literally print whatever you want without adding preservatives or additives. Unlike traditional cooking, the artificial intelligence and sensory vision can see what is happening inside to adjust for any discrepancies and it prints the food as fast as possible. This is beneficial for those who and don’t enjoy cooking because it uses fresh and healthy ingredients instead of microwavable frozen food.

    3D printing could also reduce food waste by cutting down on plastic packaging and reusing food capsules to a store, fill up, and take home to print. As a result, I think 3D printing has the potential for commercial usage and to bring positive change to healthier food habits.


  2. People might be excited to hear the growth and expansion of 3D printing like this, but using 3D printing in food industry is not easy to accept by everyone, which involves with concerns as well. Moreover, not all of food within the country has certificated by FDA yet, so we could not make sure that the food printed by 3D printer is safe enough or contains better nutritions. During the process of ‘printing food’, such as printing patterns color on a pancake, it could cause the artificial flavor or chemical ingredients radiate the food.
    In addition, there are groups of people that admire eating in organic, healthy way, which they value absorbing nutrition in a direct way. For example, people love go organic grocery store like WholeFoods, Wegmans for buying organic food. Therefore, the development of this technology might not be that as fast as it expected.
    From my perspective, I probably be in sort of conservatism for this new technology because I prefer to organic food in my daily life. So, the future of 3D printing food is not easy for me to imagine what it will look like


  3. 3D food printers are being tested right now in the hopes that they will make cooking much quicker and will reduce hunger. The first printers that have been tested have been using a lot of refined sugar for printing the foods. Although this doesn’t seem too bad since lots of food have sugar in them, this will begin too cause concerns on whether or not the printers are healthy for you. Also, this will lead to questions of what else is being added to our food that would not normally be there.

    This is similar to the microwave debate. Many consumers claim that microwave food is not safe for you, rather it is just more convenient since it is quicker than an oven. This debate will stick around with the 3D food printers since it works in some of the same ways. Although the printers are said to be able to cook food more efficiently and be more precise with cooking foods that can possibly contain bacteria, there is still the debate on if these printers will actually be satisfying those concerns.

    I think 3D food printers would be a great idea to try out in a bakery. Cakes and cookies are a safe tester to determine if these printers work and if they are precise enough. Also, it will give insight on how the food will come out- hot or cold, crispy or soggy.


  4. Although 3D printing food sounds like it would be much more efficient, this makes me question how safe the food would be. Currently, there is always a debate about how safe microwaving food is. Some people are all for microwaving their food because of the convenience of food being ready to eat in minutes rather than waiting for the oven to preheat, and cooking the food for a longer time.

    There are other people though that are totally against microwaving food. They think that the food doesn’t get cooked fully and properly by being hotter on the outside and not as hot and cooked on the inside. Microwaving food also makes some foods a mushy texture rather than a crisp one.

    I feel the same types of concerns would occur with 3D printing. I don’t think any type of big company would pick this up until a lot of FDA testing would be done on it and a consumer test to see if the product would even be able to sell.


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