Signals Blog

If scientists are already doing the seemingly impossible and making ears out of apples, surely artificially manufacturing actual apples is a piece of cake.

Enter the team at Food Ink.

As per the website, these alphabetized “architects, artists, chefs, designers, engineers, futurists, industrialists, investors and technologists” have gone with the idea of artificial food, and taken it one step – a million steps? – further: they are producing unique (understatement) dining experiences where everything from the anchovies to the zucchini – as well as the cutlery and furniture – has been 3D-printed.

As the website explains, “We are a conceptual pop-up dinner series where fine cuisine meets art, philosophy and tomorrow’s technologies.” They are striving to make an “exquisite interactive edible experience” using specialized technology. That’s a lot to digest.

The 3D printing market is expected to reach USD$30.19 billion by 2022. Established in 1981 as additive manufacturing, this revolutionary technology allowed inventors to prototype and test their designs without having to invest in expensive manufacturing processes. The technology was later co-opted by scientists at Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine to implant the first 3D-printed organ in humans in 1999. Today, 3D printing is also being used to create replacement limbs and Rita Kandel, at the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute, prints new joints. (You can read a nice history of 3D printing here.)

But back to Food Ink. While the first 3D printers were probably not conceived to be food replicators, unless the inventor was a serious Jetsons fan, it looks like foodies have something new to add to their gastronomic bucket list. Diners in London have already forked out big time (250 GBP) for a nine-course meal and food aficionados in Europe, Israel, Australia, the United States and even Canada (yay Toronto) will apparently get their chance to indulge when Food Inc. takes its show on a world tour in late 2016. See you there!



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Stacey Johnson

Stacey Johnson

For almost 20 years, Stacey has been providing strategic communications counsel to government, corporate, technology and health organizations. Prior to that, Stacey was at the CTV Television Network, first as a researcher, then as a story producer for “Goldhawk Fights Back,” a special ombudsman segment that aired weekly on the National News and Canada AM. Before joining CCRM as the Director, Communications and Marketing, Stacey was the Director of Communications for the Canadian Arthritis Network. Stacey is editor of Signals. You can follow Stacey on Twitter @msstaceyerin.