Designing functionalised sweetmeat through 3D food printing

About this project

Project description

India is the largest producer of milk in the world with milk and milk products being an integral part of Indian diet and culture. About 50-55% of milk produced in India is converted into a variety of milk products through processes such as heat-desiccation, heat-acid coagulation and fermentation. Heat desiccated milk-based semi-solids are very popular starting material for many Indian confections, which have characteristic sweet taste, caramelized flavour and soft-grainy texture. They are produced in various forms and sizes. This semi-solids would form an ideal building material for extrusion based 3D food printing. 3D food printing is an emerging technology providing engineering solution for personalised food design by combining and merging knowledge of mechatronics, 3D industrial printing and specialized food knowledge in the areas of ingredients, formulae, texture and structure. The layer-by-layer incorporation of functional ingredients into the final 3D printed sweetmeat.

This will allow consumers to indulge in their favourite sweetmeat with lower risk to diseases associated with high sugar and fat such as obesity, type-2 diabetes and coronary heart disease. This study proposes to investigate the material characteristics of the heat desiccated milk-based semisolids such as flow behaviour, melting and crystallisation characteristics of fat and sugar and other functional ingredients like vitamins, fibres, antioxidants that can be incorporated to the building material and design healthy 3D printed sweetmeats with unique structure and texture. Both single and dual nozzle 3D printers will be used in the design of sweetmeats. Further, this study will investigate the sensory perception and shelf-stability of the 3D printed sweetmeats. The developed technology and formulations have potential for commercialisation in hospitality and dairy manufacturing sectors. The protection of joint IP will be discussed when the student will commence the project.


  • The project aims to utilise the novel technology of 3D food printing to create reduced fat and sugar sweetmeats with unique texture and design.
  • The effectiveness of the healthy sweetmeats will be confirmed through a human sensory panel and shelf-life study.

Information for applicants

Essential capabilities

Food Engineering and physical chemistry with a good understanding of food material properties.

Desireable capabilities

Practical experience of rheology, understanding the working principle of Differential Scanning Calorimeter (DSC), X-ray diffractometry, Gas chromatography and other associated instruments required for studying crystallisation.

Expected qualifications (Course/Degrees etc.)

Honours or Master’s degree in Food Engineering/Food Science & Technology/Chemical Engineering/Physical Chemistry.

Candidate Discipline

Food Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Food Science & Technology, Physical Chemistry.

Project supervisors

Principal supervisors

UQ Supervisor

Dr Sangeeta Prakash

School of Agriculture & Food Sciences
IITD Supervisor

Associate professor Jatindra K Sahu

Centre for Rural Development and Technology