Hey Piercet, I appreciate your passionate response.
I would like to provide some proper information that was founded based on proven tested results rather than opinions.
I would agree with you that microscopic voids filling with bacteria is a valid concern, which is why you would not want to use a material that was not extensively tested and then approved for use.
You would want to print any material that will come into contact with food using a stainless steel nozzle.
This is a precaution, as some of the brass hot ends out there contain lead, and you don’t want that in your food material.
You will want to use a material that is dishwasher safe, just as you do now with your plastic containers.
According to the FDA:
Safe 3D printing materials for food contact (FDA approved)
PLA without additives
PET, PETG / T-Glass
Natural grade Nylon 6 & 6.6 (without additives)
Unsafe 3D printing materials for food contact
PLA with additives → Ask your hub what PLA he uses
Nylons with additives (e.g. oilon or Mos2)
High impact polystyrene (HIPS)
You may not like, or for personal reasons agree with the results, but they are infact true.
Hell legos are made out of ABS, and kids put that in their mouths.
You can and probably should use Nylon 680, this polymer is unlike any you have seen in the past. Under development for over 8 months, it is FDA approved for applications requiring contact with food or beverages. This is because of its ability to handle high temperatures inherent with steam, boiling water and dishwasher usage. It is specifically developed for FFF 3D printing and like all of taulman3D’s filaments, it has a consistent melt viscosity
There’s also a FDA food safe approved PLA that’s designed to be washed in the dishwasher as well. Can’t remember the name right now.
You can download the MSDS from Taulman for instance and verify that it is in fact food safe. (which I’ve attached for you)
You can also seal it with a food safe sealant.
If you find yourself unable to sleep, there is an excellent read from 2014 when the FDA was getting involved in certifying and classifying 3d printed materials, in the minutes of meeting there are specific examples where 3d printed nylon was discussed for it’s many useful possibilities.
Jumping forward, here’s a link to the current material criteria for “Single and Repeated Use Food Contact Surfaces”.
If you keep searching, and I may update this post later with some other references you’ll find that it can be done safely.
Infact, it already is.
nylon_680.pdf (395 KB)
Additive Manufacturing of Medical Devices Public Workshop 2.pdf (634 KB)