3D Printed Pasta – the shape of things to come?

Pasta manufacturer, Barilla, is looking to introduce 3D food printers in commercial kitchens, allowing diners to design and print their own pasta.

Over the past couple of years, the company has been working with research organisation TNO in the Netherlands, and Kjeld van Bommel, project leader at TNO, says a number of experimental 3D food printers have already been installed in a few restaurants in Eindhoven.

TNO Pasta PrinterAccording to 3Dprinterplans, Barilla and TNO hope 2014 will be a big year for food printing, and have plans to move into the international market.

TNO has been working on improving the speed of the printers, which are now 10 times faster than they were two years ago.

Barilla is hoping 3D food printing will get to a point where users fill printers will dough cartridges, similar to the current inkjet printers, and providing consumers with great flexibility in terms of their pasta designs.  For example the consumer could surprise their partner with pasta in the shape of a rose for their wedding annivarsary.  By simply saving a design in a USB and bringing it into the restaurant, the 3D printer will print the shape on site.