Callebaut now offering 3D printed chocolate at scale

17 Feb 2020

Barry Callebaut, through its global decoration brand Mona Lisa, is now offering what it claims is the world’s first personalized 3D printed chocolate at scale.

The move, the company says, revolutionizes the world of chocolate craft by combining industry-leading production technology, bespoke design and Barry Callebaut’s chocolate expertise – allowing chefs to craft their own unique creations and reproduce them rapidly and affordably, no matter how intricate or specific the design.

Callebaut now offering 3D printed chocolate at scale

Through the new Mona Lisa 3D Studio, the company says chefs now have a world of new creative tools at their disposal. For the launch event, Mona Lisa teamed up with pastry chef Jordi Roca to help him unleash his creativity through a unique 3D piece made out of chocolate. His latest creation ‘Flor de Cacao’ represents a cocoa bean that opens up like a cacao flower through contact with hot chocolate sauce.

“This new way of working with chocolate is going to take consumers by surprise,” said Roca, “with previously unthinkable shapes produced at scale and with impressive precision. I’m usually inspired by the things I can’t do as they represent a creative challenge – but now, thanks to Mona Lisa 3D Studio, I can take my chocolate craftsmanship to the next level. I can imagine any new kind of design and it will come to life.”

“Innovation is an important pillar of Barry Callebaut’s proven ‘smart growth’ strategy,” said Pablo Perversi, Chief Innovation, Sustainability; Quality Officer and Head of Gourmet at Barry Callebaut. “I am delighted that the Mona Lisa 3D Studio allows chefs to create unique consumer experiences at scale. This technological breakthrough innovation positions the Mona Lisa brand at the forefront of the industry and strengthens Barry Callebaut’s global leadership in Decorations.”

The Mona Lisa 3D Studio is equipped with innovative precision technology capable of printing thousands of pieces at a time while retaining a bespoke hand-made appearance. Chefs and customers can personalize a chocolate decoration with their own unique design, shape and size preferences, before a team of designers transform the product into a digital 3D prototype with samples. Once the prototype is approved, the final product can be quickly reproduced at scale. The creations can be used for desserts, confectionery, hot drinks and pastries. This service will be first available to chefs and hotels, coffee chains and restaurant establishments in specific European countries. The first customer of the Mona Lisa 3D Studio is Van der Valk, a leading hotel chain in the Netherlands.

According to the company, millennials and centennials want to celebrate life with new experiences and stories. In this context, food aesthetics are increasingly important. A recent Barry Callebaut research study showed that 70% of consumers want to try new and exciting chocolate experiences – and 6 out of 10 want to share it on social media. 3D printing is addressing consumer desires by pushing the boundaries of what’s possible aesthetically. With the new technology, chefs can develop unseen and unique creations and expand their craftsmanship while working with Belgian chocolate. <