Why buy chocolate when you can simply print it out? 3D printing is already used to produce plastics and metals but now the University of Exeter is spearheading the first ever chocolate printer. The University explained that there have been many challenges to get the printer to function:
Chocolate is not an easy material to work with because it requires accurate heating and cooling cycles. These variables then have to be integrated with the correct flow rates for the 3D printing process. Researchers overcame these difficulties with the development of new temperature and heating control systems.
Now why exactly is this being developed in the first place? The scientist in the video explains, "This opens up the possibility of a much wider participation, much fuller participation for the consumer in the production process. Some people call it co-creation, where the consumer is fully part of the design process. Chocolate is a very easy place to explore how that might happen."
Watch the video below to learn how this chocolate printer works.