Sensorial analysis and consumer perceptions
This Service collaborates, advises and serves the research groups implementing sensory studies and high-quality sensory evaluation. The Service is able to train and develop panels for food product with a sensory impact to establish its descriptive quantitative profile with accurate and repeatable measurement. The Service also provides consumer evaluations (recruitment made via consumer associations) including hedonic tests. Other studies provide insights into vocabulary that consumers use when tasting products, concept understanding, and effect of external factor such as packaging design and information, nutritional knowledge, health claims, etc. on consumer perception of food items.
The Service can serve industry to help solve sensory quality problems, to assess sensory shelf-life and sensory changes over time of storage, to evaluate new concepts, products, treatments, labelling, reformulations or scenarios, to compare their products with competition's products, etc.
The main objective of the Service is to help the petitioners (researchers or companies) in their projects by choosing the most appropriate sensory tests that, in principle, will be based on the ISO standards of Sensory Analysis.
Main objectives (some examples):
• Know if the variation of the raw materials, the changes of ingredients or the conditions of the transformation processes modify the sensory characteristics of the food.
• Know if the modification of the sensory characteristics affect the acceptability of the product. Visualization of results through preference maps (consumers and samples). Possibility of studying the purchase intention. Possibility of segmenting the population of consumers surveyed.
• Sensory shelf life of a food.
• Organization and management of tests with consumers through contact with consumer associations.
• Management of the computer system used for the collection and analysis of data (annual update of the software license).
• Participation in the Technical Committee 87 (Sensorial Analysis) of AENOR.
• Updating of knowledge through sensometry courses and participation in congresses related to Sensory Analysis.