Is 3D printing the future of food?

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Food and printing may not normally go hand-in-hand, but one developer hopes that it’s the way of the future. And his 3D pizza printer is turning plenty of heads at a conference in Texas.

Printed PIzzaCourtesy of KXAN/CNNThis machine makes pizza, using powdered ingredients to build a square of dough, a layer of sauce, and some cheese topping. According to KXAN, one of the biggest ideas presented at the South-by-Southwest conference is a 3D food printer.

Initially created to provide nutrients and food sources to astronauts, the printer turns powdered ingredients into edible, layered food. The first food served – pizza. The printer squeezes out dough, sauce and a cheese topping onto a heated plate, and 12 minutes later, a little pizza is ready to eat.

"We can pretty much provide food-on-table with very few resources," Anjan Contractor, developer of the 3-D food printer, said. "So we believe that this is the future of food."

Contractor is backed with a $125,000 grant from NASA to build the 3D-printed pizza prototype.

For now, food printing will be out of reach of taste buds until the FDA approves the printed products, but the developer believes that in the future, the technology could be in every kitchen.

Read, “3-D food printing emerges at SXSW Eco.”

Food printing has been around for several years. A group at Cornell University created a printer in 2011 that could print chocolate, cheese, scallops, celery and turkey. Click here for more.  

Earlier this year, Dutch scientists printed a burger with a $325,000 price tag. Though it may appease some vegetarians and animal rights activists, the product failed its first public taste test. Ranchers and farmers can rest easy for now — chefs still prefer real beef over synthetic.

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ms  |  October, 09, 2013 at 10:41 AM

I'll stick to my ttradition food.

Wisconsin  |  October, 09, 2013 at 12:37 PM

I suppose that one day all a consumer would need to do is stock up on a couple of gallons, or a couple of pounds, of a protein mix. Fill their food machine, order from a selection from a smartphone app, and when they get home, dinner is ready. Even certain dietary needs could be programmed into the system. Not so far fetched anymore is it? When dinner is over, throw everything, dishes and all, into another home appliance and forget about it. Restruants would become place where real food is served at very high prices.

Wisconsin  |  October, 09, 2013 at 01:00 PM

An additional thought. We could even have our prescription medicines and our government approved behavior control supplements all included with our environmentally safe/ethically acceptable/politically correct and biodegradable tortilla! All this and much much more available with food stamps!

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