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Slide 1
By:
Dr. Aubrey Coffee
Clemson University
Historical
Evaluation of goods, water, weapons,
etc. by humans
 The rise of trading  graders
professional tasters
 Systematic “sensory” analysis based on:
◦ Wartime efforts

Historical


Development of triangle test
(Scandinavia)
◦ Food Science Dept at UC Davis (1965)
Sensory methods developed to serve
economic interests
◦ Worth or acceptability of commodity
◦ Evaluates alternate courses optimizes
value for money
Principle uses of sensory techniques:
Quality control
 Product development
 Research

Sensory Evaluation – Formal Process



The assessment of all the qualities of a
food item as perceived by the human
senses
Not merely food “tasting” it can involve
describing food color as well as texture,
flavor, aftertaste, aroma, tactile
response, and even auditory response
Sometimes sensory analysis is used
interchangeably with sensory evaluation.
IFT Definition of Sensory Evaluation:
The scientific discipline used to evoke,
measure, analyze, and interpret human
reactions to those characteristics of
foods and beverages as they are
perceived by the senses of sight, smell,
taste, touch, and hearing
Primary function of sensory testing:
To conduct valid and reliable tests,
which provide data on which sound
decision can be made.
The role of sensory evaluation is
to….
provide valid and reliable information
to R&D, production, and marketing for
management to make sound business
decisions about the perceived sensory
properties of products.
Sensory Evaluation as a Scientific
Method


Incorporates the following:
◦ Identification of a problem
◦ The statement of a hypothesis
◦ An experimental strategy to investigate the
problem
Strategy accomplished through data
collection and analysis and a
conclusion is reached that answers the
original question
Sensory Evaluation as a Scientific
Method

The conclusion either accepts or
rejects the hypothesis according to
the results of the study
Sensory Evaluation as a Quantitative
Science
When numerical data are collected to
establish specific relationship between
product characteristics and human
perception.
 Human responses to stimuli are
quantified.

Classified according to their primary
purpose and most valid use
 Critical to match test method to
objectives of project
 Three classes are most commonly used

◦ Affective
◦ Discrimination
◦ Descriptive

Each have a different goal and selection
criteria for panelist
Discrimination
Panelist are screened for sensory acuity,
oriented to test method, sometimes
trained
Descriptive
Panelist are screened for sensory
acuity and motivation, are highly
trained
Affective
Panelist are screened for product
use, are untrained
Formal Evaluation

R&D at Corporate Offices (McDonalds,
Maggie Moo’s Ice Cream, Wendy’s,
Denny’s
Informal Evaluation

Wait staff sampling daily specials;
Customers-specials of the day; chefsdeveloping new menu items
(trial/error)
The Way We Eat:
File of Dreams
We tend to perceive the attributes
of a food item in the following
order…..
Appearance
 Odor / aroma / fragrance
 Consistency and texture
 Flavor (aromatics, chemical feeling,
taste)

There are at least three steps in the process of
sensory perception:
Flavor
Taste
Odor
Mouth
feel
Trigeminal
perception
The overall impression of flavor is a combination of taste,
odor, mouthfeel, and trigeminal perception
TRIGEMINAL
STIMULI
ODOR /
VOLATILES
TASTE
Excitement
Variety &
Interest
Basic
Notes
Sweet, sour, salty, bitter, umami
The Flavor Pyramid Concept by Dr.
Kilcast
Similar in concept with Dr. Kilcast
 Describes the development of flavor
differently
 At the base or foundation of his
pyramid is Emotion, followed by
Appearance, Aroma, Texture,
Sensation, and at the top, Basic
Tastes.

Childhood
 Travel
 Family
 Events
 Culture
 Past
Experiences

Color
 Contrast
 Size
 Height
 Plate Coverage

Acidic
 Esters
 Spicy
 Lactonic
 Sulfury
 Sweet
 Woody/Smokey
 Terpenic

Crunchy
 Crispy
 Soft
 Mushy
 Smooth
 Creamy

Cooling
 Numbing
 Fullness
 Tingle
 Burn
 Bite
 Pungency
 Astringency

Sour
 Sweet
 Bitter
 Salty
 Umami
(Savory)

When Science Sniffs
Around The Kitchen
How do you incorporate sensory
evaluation into your curriculum?
As a course offering
•An introductory or first level course focusing
on all aspects of sensory evaluation
As a component in an existing course
•Incorporating elements of sensory
evaluation within an basic culinary course
•Utilize ingredient companies educational
initiatives
Hands-on Activities
As a component in an existing course:
Basic Tastes – Umami Laboratory
Basic Tastes – Umami Laboratory
Scope (Introduction)
•Information on the topic
•Basic tastes types
•History on umami
•What is it?
•Where can it be found?
•How difficult is it to identify?
•Characteristics
Basic Tastes – Umami Laboratory
Test Objective(s)
•Why is the laboratory being conducted?
•What do you expect the students to learn?
•Objective for this laboratory:
To recognize and evaluate umami taste
qualities
Basic Tastes – Umami Laboratory
Materials and Methods for the Laboratory
•What supplies are needed – can be time
intensive
•Include every step in the process – makes it
easier the next time it is conducted
•Note adjustment or changes immediately
after lab
•Include directions for the students
•If demonstrating, include also
Basic Tastes – Umami Laboratory
Key Teaching Points
•List here the teaching points for the labs
•Just the “cake”, no “icing”
•As students are completing the lab, these
would be the comments to emphasize the
objectives stated in the beginning.
Basic Tastes – Umami Laboratory
References
•Include all of your sources
•When using web-based sources, include
address and date accessed – information do
change
•Allows for students to complete further
research
•Gives credit to researcher and authors
Basic Tastes – Umami Laboratory
Supplemental Handouts
•Tables and forms for students data collection
•Additional information to reinforce topic or
objectives
Basic Tastes – Umami Laboratory
Brewed Lite Soy Sauce
Brewed Soy Sauce
Chocolate Sauce w/o Soy Sauce
Non-brewed Soy Sauce
Soy-Infused Chocolate Sauce
Tasting Grid
Hands-on Activities
As a course offering:
The Elements of Butter Laboratory
• Research and Development
• New Product Development
• Ingredient Substitution
.
Fresh Butter
• Mild, sweet, clean, pleasant flavor and
a delicate aroma
• Appetite seems to “craves more of the
product
• Reminiscent of the best “butter
popcorn”.
Butter Buds® 8x
• Enzyme modification technology
• Highly concentrated flavor in convenient
powder form – 400 x the flavor strength
• 1# of Butter Buds® 8x = flavor strength of ~
8# butter
• Typical usage level: 1.0%-4.0% total batch
weight
Diacetyl
• Greenish yellow liquid compound (CH3CO)2
• Occurs as a natural byproduct of
fermentation
• Found in several dairy products (butter,
cheese, milk), as well as bread, coffee, and
rum
• Component of artificial butter flavoring
Questions?
References:
Kaun, S. 2006. The multi-sensory flavor experience. Flavor & the Menu. Tigard, Oregon.
Pg. 48-52
------ 2006. Building on the flavor pyramid. Flavor & the Menu. Tigard, Oregon. Pg. 55-58
------ 2006 Flavor by Latitude. Flavor & the Menu. Tigard, Oregon. Pg. 48-52
Kikkoman International, Inc. 50 California Street, Suite 3600, San Francisco, Ca 94111.
Website: www.kikkoman-usa.com
McGee, H. 2006. When science sniffs around the kitchen. New York Times. Accessed
December 11, 2006 at
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/12/06/dining/06curi.html?ei=5024&en=8b5dee2a4bc205a5
&ex=1...
Meilgaard, MM., Civille, GV., Carr, BT. 1999. Sensory Evaluation Techniques. 3rd Edition.
CRC Press. New York
Murano, P.S. 2003. Understanding food science and technology. Wadsworth / Thompson
Learning. Belmont, CA
Powell, J. 2006. The way we eat: file of dreams. New York Times. Accessed December
11, 2006 at
http://nytimes.com/2006/12/10/magazine/10food.t.html?ei=5024&en=a2188a66370da7ed
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