The New 3D Printing Chocolate Experience
Where do you find customized chocolate in complex shapes? Mostly in upscale or fancy restaurants exclusively crafted by seasoned culinary chefs. Soon that will change because for the first time these creations will be 3D printed on a large scale to be available to the general population. Barry Callebaut, the Swiss cocoa giant, will launch the world’s first under the brand, Mona Lisa, in Spain.
At a Barry Callebaut launch event, world renowned pastry chef, Jordi Roca, will showcase his own 3D chocolate piece called ‘Flor de Cacao’ that represents a cocoa bean that opens up like a cacao flower through contact with hot chocolate sauce. He said consumers will be amazed at this new way of making chocolates – the shapes are impossibly intricate and done with such precision.
Barry Callebaut has been working on 3D chocolate for a long time, and its latest technology is able to print thousands of pieces at a time while retaining a bespoke handmade appearance. Artisan chefs and chocolate manufacturers can work with the company to present their creations to a broader audience. The company will develop the software so that several companies can link their machine parts to build the 3D printer.
The big confectioners like Nestlé and Mondelēz will be mass-producing 3D chocolate through a partnership with Barry Callebaut. Some of the most popular chocolate shapes, such as chocolate bunnies and flowers, will be produced by Mona Lisa. More intricate designs like bunny hair can also be made. The shapes will depend on what the manufacturers will need for customization.
3D printing will allow Mona Lisa to add premium quality to its chocolates, and provide a unique experience to younger consumers who like to share pictures of food on social media. 70% of consumers want to try new chocolate experiences, and six out of 10 are willing to share it on social media. The new chocolates will be Instagrammable and very trendy. And 3D printing will make that possible.
In fact, Barry Callebaut has a strong innovation pipeline. They have already launched the fourth type of chocolate – the Ruby. That’s after dark chocolate, white chocolate and milk chocolate. They’ve also chocolates made from whole cacao fruit, as well as dairy-free chocolates. The company will continue to face the different challenges in this exciting industry.
It’s nice to think of the possibilities of customized chocolates and other foods made possible via 3D printing.