Food Technology is a branch of food science that deals with the production processes that make foods. We track hundreds of SMEs and startups innovating in food technology, so decided to take a closer look at the most exciting new startups in food technology.
Founded in 2015, UK-based nūfood is creating a 3D food printer that makes “juicy bites” to complement your meals. The company’s 3D printing technology builds defined objects composed largely of liquid, and is orders of magnitude faster than existing 3D printing techniques. Small capsules of almost any liquid can be created and used as building blocks to form a well-defined, cohesive, self-supporting structure.
The system has already been used to create personalised “fruit” on demand from fruit juices, alcoholic beverages, sauces and many other ingredients. By choosing the ingredients, design and rigidity, it is possible to customise the flavour, shape, colour and texture of the fruits. This allows the ‘recreation’ of existing fruits such as raspberries, and the production entirely new foods such as a low-sugar raspberry, a berry made of honey, and a strawberry with built-in cream.
Spain-based Natural Machines was founded in 2012 and is developing a 3D food printer called the Foodini that helps create savoury or sweet cuisine. The food is made from fresh ingredients prepared before printing. Natural Machines says it wants to promote cooking with fresh ingredients by managing the difficult and time-consuming parts of food preparation that often discourage people from creating homemade food.
The first wave of Foodini 3D printers is expected to be shipped to professional chefs and other customers in early 2016, and the next generation of printers (which is likely be able to cook as well as print your food) will target the home cook.
Founded in 2014, US-based 915 Labs is the provider of a new food processing and packaging technology called Microwave Assisted Thermal Sterilization (MATS), which the company describes as a transformative technology that will enable the consumer packaged goods sector to meet growing consumer demand for high-quality, natural and additive-free packaged food.
MATS simultaneously heats packaged food externally in a pressurized hot water bath and internally using a patented microwave energy delivery system at a frequency of 915 megahertz. This combination of approaches very rapidly heats the entire package of food to sterilization temperature and then rapidly cools the food to minimize any heat damage, eliminating pathogens and spoilage microorganisms in a matter of minutes. This shortened heating time preserves the nutrients, colour, texture and flavour of foods — while providing a shelf life equivalent to conventionally processed foods.
flatev wants to revolutionize the way people prepare fresh flatbreads, starting with tortillas. The company has developed a patented flatbread preparation system in which the user simply inserts a dough pod into the machine, pushes a button, and then has a fresh tortilla in less than one minute.
The machine takes up as much space as an average coffee-maker or rice cooker, and is designed for use in personal kitchens, offices, food trucks, or restaurants.
flatev was founded 2012 and is based in Switzerland and New York.
Print2Taste was founded in Germany in 2013 and develops Bocusini, an easy-to-use open source food printing system for gastronomy, patisserie and home applications. It consists of a heated food printing head mounted to a standard 3D printer, a selection of easy to change cartridges with printable food, an intuitive user interface and the Bocusini.com web platform with creative food designs and recipes.
The system can successfully print more than 30 different food products. These are part of the six most important food categories: Confectionary (chocolate, marzipan, chewing gum, fudge, jelly), bakery products (cookie, meringue, biscuit), snack products (potato crisps, savoury snacks), fruit & vegetable Products (all kind of fruit purees, fruit sauces, fruit jellies or gelled vegetables), meat products (different pates and meat spreads) and dairy products (cream cheese or yoghurt).