4D food printing

Value adding to food wastes through 4D printing restructuring

Degree type


Closing date

27 March 2023



Citizenship requirement



$31,500pa for 3.5 years

About the research project

This project is to research factors that govern the quality of products that can be produced by 4D food printing for valorisation of food grade seconds and wastes. Regionally, lower grade food products such as mechanically recovered meats and second grade fruit and vegetables could be stabilised into feed streams for future food printing or other restructuring technologies. However, high-throughput commercial applications of 4D food printing will require feed streams that are stabilised and optimised for producing quality printed foods. Formulation, combined with food preservation systems, such as microwave assisted thermal sterilisation (MATS) or flow-through UHT will be required to make shelf-stable bulk food ingredients for 4D-food printing production lines.

This project will characterise the critical variables for stabilising the texture, colour and flavour of products such as animal proteins and fruit and vegetable powders or purees for use as shelf-stable solutions to feed 4D food printers. The research will investigate the performance of gelation and stabilisation options and test the quality of outcomes using 4D-food printers. Research will use a texture analyser, headspace GC-MS aroma measurement and electronic togue to characterise the outcomes of formulation and processing variables required for stabilization and successful 4D printing into consumer desirable food formats. Graduates from this research will be skilled in the creation of new food products for a career in advanced food product development.

Primary Supervisor

Meet Dr Samantha Sawyer


The successful applicant will receive a scholarship which provides:

  • a living allowance stipend of $31,500 per annum (2023 rate, indexed annually) for 3.5 years
  • a relocation allowance of up to $2,000
  • a tuition fees offset covering the cost of tuition fees for up to four years (domestic applicants only)

If successful, international applicants will receive a University of Tasmania Fees Offset for up to four years.

As part of the application process you may indicate if you do not wish to be considered for scholarship funding.


Applicants should review the Higher Degree by Research minimum entry requirements.

Selection Criteria

The project is competitively assessed and awarded.  Selection is based on academic merit and suitability to the project as determined by the College.

Additional essential selection criteria specific to this project:

  • Relevant degree in food science, food processing, or food chemistry
  • Evidence of research capability from publications

Additional desirable selection criteria specific to this project:

  • Experience in advanced analytical instrumentation
  • Aptitude for computing applications of relevance to 3D printing
  • Strength in advanced statistical data analysis
  • Understanding of sensory or consumer assessment
  • Currently domiciled in Australia
  • Australian residency or citizenship

Application process

There is a three-step application process:

  1. Select your project, and check you meet the eligibility and selection criteria;
  2. Contact the Primary Supervisor, Dr Samantha Sawyer to discuss your suitability and the project's requirements; and
  3. Submit an application by the closing date listed above.
    • Copy and paste the title of the project from this advertisement into your application. If you don’t correctly do this your application may be rejected.
    • As part of your application, you will be required to submit a covering letter, a CV including 2 x referees and your project research proposal.

Following the application closing date applications will be assessed within the College. Applicants should expect to receive notification of the outcome by email by the advertised outcome date.

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