A Better East Texas: 3D printed food

Published: Oct. 21, 2022 at 6:14 PM CDT
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Several years ago, articles started appearing trumpeting the advancement of 3D printing. Since then, 3D print capabilities have jumped significantly to the point that 3D printers are now available for consumers to use to create just about anything. But, now you can find articles discussing the printing of food.

Several European companies have started printing food, and the leading application is making vegetable-based food components into what look, taste, even smell like, animal-based food. This has the feel of a bad sci-fi movie, but will likely be heading our way. Researchers have created a process that takes plants and 3D prints them into high-end beef, or just about any other animal-protein entree you’d like.

Now, proponents point out that the plants are easier to produce than livestock, better for the environment, create less waste, and can help with innovation in the food-consuming world. But, the thought of a vegan New York Strip is just a little too much. We’ve already conquered synthetic diamonds, titanium joint replacements for hips and knees, but we need to keep food products separate. There are certainly items that we already eat that have questionable ingredients, but being forced to trade animal meat cuts for cuts from plants is too much. We have to preserve a choice. 3D printing looks to be here to stay, but let’s keep the applications off the dinner plate.

That’ll make for a Better East Texas.