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Food technology

The $99 ChocaByte promises small 3D-printed chocolates

If you’ve been keeping an eye out for a 3D chocolate printer, you probably know that there’s currently not much on the market. Foodini is in its Kickstarter phase and the ChefBot doesn’t print in chocolate. However, the ChocaByte 3D chocolate printer that debuted at this year's CES has since been offered at a special price of US$99 on a limited run of 500 printers, before heading to mass production in its home country of Australia.  Read More

Researchers have discovered conditions that would allow plants to grow quickly in optimal ...

There's a conundrum of growing food in outer space: the same optimal conditions that create quick plant growth also leaves them missing a nutrient that protects human eyes from radiation, such as astronauts experience. However, scientists under the direction of Barbara Demmig-Adams at the University of Colorado Boulder have developed a method of using bright pulses of light to trick plants into producing more zeaxanthin, which humans cannot produce on their own but is essential for long-term eye health and visual acuity.  Read More

The new MRE pizza being tried out by the troops (Photo: US Army)

Pizza with a three-year shelf life will soon be joining the US Army's field rations menu. These infamous MREs (Meal, Ready to Eat) have a long and checkered history, acquiring such sobriquets over the years as "Meals Rejected by Everyone" and "Materials Resembling Edibles." Pizza has long topped the list of requested meals, but the task of providing a palatable slice of this complex food that will survive the required three-year shelf life has foiled all attempts. Now, the folks at Natick's Combat Feeding Directorate have achieved a minor miracle in food technology: stopping time for a slice of pizza.  Read More

A 3D-printed pizza that astronauts might one day be able to dig into (Photo: Anjan Contrac...

Snacking on a freshly-made pizza in outer space just got a whole lot closer thanks to Anjan Contractor's 3D pizza printer. Contractor, who won NASA's US$125,000 grant last year to create a 3D printer that could print food for astronauts on missions, has come out with a functional prototype.  Read More

Hershey and 3D Systems are partnering together to develop new products (Photo: Shutterstoc...

We've recently seen a cornucopia of 3D food printers specialized for consumer and prosumer chefs. Now a major corporation has expressed interest in the sprouting 3D-printed food industry – chocolate-maker Hershey has announced a development partnership with 3D Systems.  Read More

3D Systems unveiled the ChefJet  and ChefJet Pro (pictured) at CES

Last year we reported that Liz and Kyle von Hasseln had modified a 3D printer to churn out custom sugary treats. The husband and wife team's efforts appear to have caught the eye of 3D Systems, with the company responsible for the no-assembly-required Cubify and sub-US$1,000 Cube 3 enlisting them to help develop a 3D printer aimed specifically at the kitchen. The result is the new ChefJet series unveiled at CES, which swaps plastic prints for custom culinary creations.  Read More

Researchers use probiotic bacteria from nuts to make new products

The vegetable milk market could be about to get more varied with the findings of a new study carried out in Spain. Using probiotic bacteria obtained from grains and nuts, researchers at the Universitat Politècnica de València have come up with a range of fermented products. They hope their findings will increase the choice and the quality of plant milks for people with allergies, lactose intolerance, pregnant women and, of course, vegans.  Read More

The Foodini in action

If you don’t regularly prepare your own food, is it because of the time involved? Would you make homemade pizza more often if you could “print”’ it? Barcelona-based Natural Machines aims to automate many kitchen tasks, but its Foodini food printer resembles a sleek desktop 3D printer more than any of the appliances already in your kitchen. And like its 3D-printing cousins, Foodini also lets users add in a dash of personal customization.  Read More

It glows when licked, and presumably doesn't taste like jellyfish

Late last month, as a definitely unique way of celebrating Hallowe'en, Bristol-based specialty ice cream-maker Charlie Harry Francis unveiled what is probably the world's first-ever glow-in-the-dark ice cream. His secret ingredient? Jellyfish protein.  Read More

A batch of grapes that passed the new system's inspection

Wine grapes may soon be joining oranges and strawberries, on the list of "Fruits That Are Now Inspected and Sorted by Machines." As part of the Grapesort project, Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute for Optronics, System Technologies and Image Exploitation has helped create an automated system that not only gives bum grapes the boot, but also divides up the good ones according to quality.  Read More

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