Will it not be fascinating to see your actual photograph on a cake at your birthday party? Printing technology has developed to an extent that, it is able to create edible images using edible ink on edible paper.
Bakers are printing innovative designs and artwork directly onto their cakes with the help of edible printers. Paper made out of icing or wafer is used to print images that can be consumed. The images are given life with food coloring that is called edible inks. Like a regular printer, you can print any kind of image on frost paper and use it for decoration as well as consumption.
Let us explore more about this edible printing so that you can know how these bakers are creating such lovely decorations on your cake.
Can you Print Edible Paper on a Regular Printer?
Technically, you can use edible paper made out of wafers or icing on a regular printer. An edible printer works just like a normal printer and you can get similar output with that paper. It will not damage the paper or the printer in any way. But it is very dangerous and there is a potential health hazard if you are using a normal printer for your edible printing.
FDA has regulations on the use of edible paper, ink, and printer for edible printing. The ink used for normal printing is toxic and cannot be consumed by humans. So, if you use edible paper in a used regular printer, then it is highly toxic and can lead to serious health issues.
Even if you buy a new regular printer for edible printing, you have to use edible ink cartridges and they may not suit the device properly. Also, the sugar from the edible ink may get clogged onto the head over time and you have to frequently remove it to clean them.
Although there is a technical possibility for edible printing with normal printers, it is highly discouraged to use it for that purpose. Even if the printer doesn’t harm the paper in any way, it is better to avoid using such printers.
You may even clean a used regular printer thoroughly for edible image printing. But that is also discouraged due to the potential harm that can arise with such usage.
It is safe to use specialized edible printers for decorating your cakes and other baked foods to avoid any health hazards.
Read: How do I get my printer to print in exact color?
Is edible paper safe for normal printers?
Edible paper is safe for normal printers. They don’t get damaged with the regular printer while printing. A normal paper thickness is around 0.05mm to 0.10mm. A regular printer easily prints images and texts on such papers without any damage.
But the thinnest edible paper is around 0.22mm thick and there is no way that it can get damaged with a regular printer. While these printers can easily get around with thinner papers, edible paper is thicker and stronger to handle the forces exerted by the printer on it.
Edible papers come in three different grades:
O grade – 0.22mm thickness
AD Grade – 0.27 – 0.35mm thickness
DD Grade – 0.6mm thickness
Since the thickness of these papers is high, you can confidently use them on regular printers. But only due to the normal ink hazard it is being discouraged for edible image printing. Otherwise, the papers can withstand any type of printer without any issues.
Read: Is printer ink the same as toner?
Where do we use edible paper printing?
Edible paper printing is majorly used in baking. Cakes, cookies, and other confectionaries can be decorated with the image of your preference with the help of edible printing tech.
Instead of doing the usual boring designs with icing cream, you can generate attractive artwork and imprint them on the cakes. This makes them impressive and provides a unique satisfaction.
Especially if you are presenting your loved ones with a cake, edible printing can help you imprint a beautiful photograph on it and make them remember the moment. It makes the day more memorable and unique.
So, edible paper printing is primarily used in bakeries to create distinct cakes and confectionaries for their customers. If you are creating a brand with your bakery, then you can also use this technology to establish it and market the bakery easily.
Read: How do I remove paper stuck in printer?
Which kind of printer is suitable for printing on edible papers?
There are specialized printers known as Edible printers that are highly recommended and suitable for edible papers. Popular brands like Epson and Canon are selling these edible printers. They are designed to handle edible ink and edible paper more carefully than regular printers.
Apart from these two brands, there are other printer manufacturers who produce devices specifically for this purpose. You can also buy from them.
These printers work like inkjet printers where it has a cartridge filled with ink. The printhead holds the cartridge and has several tiny nozzles. When you start printing, The paper is reeled in and the printhead moves and sprays the ink through the nozzles as per the image.
Similarly, an edible printer will have cartridges filled with edible ink. So, the printhead moves back and forth spraying the edible ink onto the frosted paper and you get the image on it.
So, the technical operation and working principle of these printers are the same. Other processes like the reeling of paper and automatic delivery of printed paper are also the same as a normal printer.
But the difference comes with the type of ink used. Therefore, you can use a branded edible printer for decorating your cakes with edible images.
Read: Can you clean the print head manually?
An edible paper has the potential to survive a normal printer. It can also produce vibrant and stunning images just like normal ones. But due to the ink toxicity, you have to use specialized printers for this purpose. If you are using a brand-new regular printer then it is fine. Otherwise, it is safe to use the edible printer. Apart from that, there aren’t any concerns with using a normal printer for printing edible paper.