CHOCOLATES AND SWEETS might never look the same again thanks to a manufacturer that has launched a 3D printer capable of producing confectionary, as opposed to the typical inedible plastic objects like cat toys or replicas of someone's head.
The food printing machine was unveiled at CES in Las Vegas, of course, by a US company called 3D Systems that will launch two devices. The smaller basic Chefjet will go for $5,000 (about £3,500) and the larger Chefjet Pro will retail for around double that price.
The 3D food printers apparently will be able to craft chocolate creations in a number of crazy and complex shapes never before seen by the confectionary industry.
3D Systems said, "We invite leading pastry chefs, restaurateurs and event planners to join us in bringing 3D printing into the kitchen."
Perhaps just another crazy gimmick to come out of CES never to see the light of day again, the Chefjet is limited to creations of just one colour with a build volume of 8x8x6in, whereas its bigger brother, the Chefjet Pro is capable of producing multi-coloured creations with a larger build volume of 10x14x8in.
However, this is not the first time the idea of 3D printing food has come to our attention. Last year a company called Modern Meadow talked up its bioprinting technology capable of printing fast food such as burgers for a tidy sum of $300,000 per machine.
Apparently, US space agency Nasa has given a $125,000 grant to a 3D printing firm to solve the problem of feeding astronauts on long term missions to other planets, so printed space pizza might one day become a reality.
Earlier last year, fast food giant McDonalds showed interest in bringing 3D printing into its 'restaurants' to broaden its appeal to technology-savvy customers. It was not to print burgers, however, but instead to bring more standard plastic 3D printing to its restaurants, hinting that it could be used for churning out Happy Meal toys. µ