Printing solutions for every surface, even fruit!

The continual innovation in printing solutions within the industry means there’s very few surfaces left that can’t be printed on. New techniques mean it’s now possible to print on virtually anything, from bubble wrap to glass or concrete to fruit!

The latest printing solution to be announced is laser printing for fruit. Although the technology has been around for a while, this technique has recently gone mainstream with the announcement that Marks and Spencers will be trialling laser printing labels on their oranges. It works by removing the pigment from the outside of the fruit, and then printing with a pigment. The process marks the outside of the fruit, but leaves the inside unharmed. It’s already used on melons in Europe, so it will be interesting to see if it catches on the UK.

Here at Hague, we offer printing solutions for a huge variety of surfaces, although fruit isn’t one of them. Although it seems revolutionary, printing solutions on food isn’t that unusual – chances are your local supermarket offers a cake printing service, whereby they transfer an image onto icing. Another food product that’s been printed on for years is eggs – it’s been a legal requirement to have codes on eggs since 2004.

In fact over the last few years there have been many prototypes of printers that can print designs onto all sorts of food. A quick search finds machines to imprint designs on everything from latte foam to crackers, chocolate and pretty much every type of food available. There’s also 3D printers which are ‘printing’ the food itself – these machines produce structures made of chocolate, sugar, and even pasta. The ChefJet is the first consumer food printer and is due to go on sale shortly. It will cost £3,000 and can produce various shapes of confectionary. Although whether anyone wants to eat food that’s gone through a printer remains to be seen.