3D Printing

3DiTaly is Making Chocolate History with New 3D Print Shop in Sicily

Fans of all that is 3D printing (that definition is getting to be quite large) know that 3D printing technologies applied to food are starting to drive technological appetites. Foodini, 3D Systems’ and the Sugar Lab’s Chefjet, and Choc Edge are leading the way and now two Italian companies, WASP and 3DiTALY have gone to Modica, the Sicilian realm of chocolate, to give it a shot.

3ditaly 3d printer 3d printing chocolateThe 3D printer producer based in Ravenna, Italy, got together with the first Italian 3D printing retail franchise and, for the opening of the new 3D print shop in gorgeous Ragusa Ibla, they partnered with Old Dolceria Bonajuto (the oldest chocolate shop in Sicily) to 3D print using traditional Modica chocolate.

“It was a natural collaboration,” said Franco Ruta, the current owner of Old Dolceria Bonajuto, “we happily accepted the challenge. Our conviction has always been that antique does not necessarily mean outdated. Traditions represent a collection of experiences in constant evolution which stem from certain absolute concepts such as respect for the quality of the ingredients and the products specific characteristics. These concepts can and should always be used to experiment and promote new ideas.”

3ditaly 3d printer 3d printing chocolate

The new idea, in this case, is extruding fused chocolate through the FFF process, an additive process already adopted by other chocolate 3D printers. It turned out to be a particularly good fit for the characteristics of Modica chocolate. This very particular type of chocolate has a very peculiar fragrant and delicate consistency and is produced through a low temperature process similar to that used by the Aztecs.

3ditaly 3d printer 3d printing chocolate teamLast weekend, on May 11th a modified version of WASP’s PowerWASP Delta 3D printer was used to extrude the Chcolate during the party that saw the opening of the third 3DiTALY branded store on the national territory, after those in Rome and Pescara. The chocolate was fused at about 31°C and then poured into a normal pastry siringe, which was attached to the 3D printer’s mechanical arm. A stepper motor applied pressure while the arm moves along the axis to create the novelty modica chocolate shapes.

In Italy food is sacred and some feel digitally manufacturing food will take away from the respect of century-old traditions (something that is reflected in all manufacturing as well). Few places are more attached to traditions than Sicily so this decision to embrace new technologies and to fuse them together with long standing practices and experiences is a great example of what could be achieved. And a tasty one too.