The US chocolate manufacturer did not reveal the cost of the deal or if and when the printed products will be available to consumers.
Three-dimensional chocolate products are created by melting chocolate, tempering it and depositing it onto a substrate in two-dimensional layers as little as 0.05 mm thick. Chocolate is a notoriously difficult material to 3D print with due to issues controlling the temperature and viscosity of the material adequately.
Last week at CES 3D Systems unveiled what they claimed to be the first food-safe 3D printer, along with the three-dimensional sweets it produced. It uses an ink jet print head to paint water over a fine later of sugar, which hardens and recrystalises the sugar into complex geometric shapes.
British company Choc Edge claims to be able to create a chocolate replica of your face using a 3D printer, costing between £50 and £80 per design.
William Papa, Vice President and Chief Research and Development Officer of the Hershey company said: “Whether it’s creating a whole new form of candy or developing a new way to produce it, we embrace new technologies such as 3D printing as a way to keep moving our timeless confectionery treats into the future.”