Speculations On 3D Printing — Part 2

Yesterday I speculated about the potential of 3D printers as future consumer products, as well as its possible societal and economic consequences. in the world of food we can find the same developments.

Think of the interesting project of the researchers and futurists at Philips to explore the future possibilities of a Food Printer. The Food Printer is the result of an experimental investigation which is a part of Philips’ Diagnostic Kitchen program. It’s an effort to take a provocative and unconventional look at areas that could have a profound effect on the way we eat and source our food 15-20 years from now.

“The Food Printer has been inspired by the so-called ‘molecular gastronomists.’ These chefs deconstruct food and then reassemble it in completely different ways, so for instance you could be served carrot as foam or parmesan cheese as a strand of spaghetti. “We wanted to examine how you could take this idea further in the domestic environment” says van Heerden. This led to the concept of a Food printer, which would essentially accept various edible ingredients and then combine and ‘print’ them in the desired shape and consistency, in much the same way as stereolithographic printers create 3-D representations of product concepts. The nutritional value and relevance of what was being ‘printed’ could also be adjusted based on input from the diagnostic kitchen’s nutrition monitor.”

This video below explains Philips’ Food Probes. It’s worth watching it, although it’s a little long.