Most recently VTT Finland is trying it’s hand on the 3D printed food industry. A mot ago the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland announced their plan for the 3D printing network, while the researchers have just acknowledged that they are working on an entire new 3D printing project. In order to promote healthy eating habits the VTT team is making efforts in establishing and developing a completely new chain of 3D printed snacks that are packed with supplementary nutrients.
They had already started making efforts in the desired project while they have also completed their first 3D printing test. The VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland also revealed their idea of making snacks that are more healthier and are appealing in terms of taste and texture. They are also looking forward for making high-tech 3D printing vending machines that can produce customized and nutrition loaded treats in a moment’s notice.
With these leading their way to a nutrition loaded snacks the Finnish researchers say that they will be trying to enable snacks to meet customer expectations, at the same time making it more tempting and appealing. They further described, “Self-production would enable customization in addition to these [features]. 3D printing technology offers new opportunities to realize such expectations.”
At the initial stage the tests were focused on texture with starch and cellulose based materials being 3D printed alongside vegetables like oat and fava bean and dairy whey proteins. The texture of the food or the snack that we eat is one of the main aspects trailing taste perceptions. Many food companies have tried combining varied textures with different flavors to establish fantastic combinations, imagine chocolate eggs with a solid outer layer and soft centers, or a crunchy topping for your ice cream. According to the Finnish researchers 3D printing has the potential to incorporate various textures in a single bite and fees thankful for the layered production process.
Further the VTT principal Scientist Nseli Sözer says, that the 3D printing vending machines are no sooner going to be a reality as they are still in the early stages of development and realization. “A great deal of work is needed in order to proceed to industrial-scale production. Equipment needs to be developed in addition to materials. Such equipment could be developed for domestic 3D food printing as well as vending machines,” he says.
On the other hand with the latest food 3D printing research the VTT research team is also building other researches in process. They are associating with a 3D printing food projects in collaboration with Aalto University and are also funded by Tekes. Another effort of the project is to improve the floe properties of the multi-textured food structures and also curb the high costs on the hardware. More largely their aim is to establish a new ingredient mix that will optimize flow properties and can be used by Finnish industries to give tough competition to others among the 3D printing food industry. More sooner we will be seeing more advancements from the VTT in terms of 3D printing in the near future.