3d food becomes more and more an experience… – Interview with Nina Hoff, byFlow

3d food becomes more and more an experience… – Interview with Nina Hoff, byFlow

byFlow is a Dutch manufacturer of innovative 3D printers. The Focus of byFlow is the world’s first foldable 3Dprinter with fast exchanging printerheads to print a very wide range of printer materials.  This way it becomes possible in the future to print multilayered foods. Chocolate from multinational Barry Callebaut is used by byFlow to make foodprinting easier. Chocolate is a real challenge as it has many properties that have to be handled.  Nina Hoff is since 2010 involved in 3D printing via her dad and brother, the last one developed the initial idea out of frustration while developing 3D printers for food. Nina will speak about how 3D printing hacks the way we eat our dinner on June 28 during the 3D Food Printing Conference in Venlo.

“3D food printing is becoming quickly an experience people are looking forward to. 3D food printing has come a long way and still has much development ahead, but in a few years’ time it will become a household activity,” says Nina Hoff, Managing Director byFlow in Eindhoven. “Speed is an important hurdle for us, but has very much to do with the properties of the materials used for printing. Chocolate was our first basic material and proved to be rather difficult, but in the end we have mastered it.”

byFlow developed a special syringe for dedicated chocolate that works with drops of chocolate developed by Callebaut. The printer head keeps the material fluid, enough to be able to spurt the chocolate in the required form. “But every material has its own properties and that is where a lot of time is needed for development. We have got now also experience with meat. This is actually meat that would be discarded normally, but we grind it and that way we can use it to make ‘steak tartare’. But we are going to do this also with vegetables and fruit, which will be freeze-dried after which it becomes powder and can be used in the syringes. This way we recycle foods that would otherwise have gone in the bin,” explains Hoff. “On top of that, we guarantee that no additions have been incorporated, so that the material is pure. This will also have a positive influence on the experience, as we work with several chefs who have interesting ideas for 3D food printing.”

One of the chefs is Erling Rugsten, who works with his ‘food-chapter’ at Seats 2 meet Strijp-S in Eindhoven. Chef Erling is very excited about 3D printing. “Each chef wants to bring excitement to his customers when they eat, in such a way that eating is a feast to enjoy every meal and every day and people are happy. 3D printing brings us technologies we must embrace, so as to make it possible for instance for elderly and handicapped to enjoy their food as well. The countless opportunities of the 3D printers will bring us an enormous potential of new developments. In such a way that one time in the future we will wonder what life was like when there was no 3D printer!”


A major drawback at the moment is the relative long time needed to print a food product. This is the main reason why it is not yet as well known to the general public, but this is going to change, according to Hoff. “With the ongoing developments on all parts of the 3D food chain, it will be possible in about five years to make a bar in a few minutes, instead of 30 now, depending on the design and properties of the product required. We also hope that in due course the legislation and regulation regarding the materials for 3D printing will be clear, as there are now no limits as to what is allowed. This is important to the manufacturers of materials as well the manufacturers of the machines. We have in Holland a set of rules –known as HACCP- that regulate the hygiene around the materials used, but more is badly needed. Especially when the developments are going so fast, it is important to have the legal things in order. This will in fact speed up development even more as there is a clear playing field.”


For more information and registration to the 3D Food Printing Conference, we invite you to visit https://3dfoodprintingconference.com/

The interview was made by Jakajima, the organiser of the conference. For more interviews with speakers at Jakajima conferences, we invite you to visit Jakajima’s website

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