The latest on sensory at the Food Oral Processing congress

Danone Nutricia Research presented two abstracts at the 5th International Conference on Food Oral Processing which was held from 1 to 4 July at the University of Nottingham, UK.

The impact of ageing on aroma

As we age, how we perceive food can change1. Alterations in our taste receptors and sense of smell – key contributors to flavour perception – affect the way we enjoy food2.
Sophie Lester, PhD student at the Division of Food Sciences, University of Nottingham, UK presented the poster ‘The impact of human ageing on the detection of key aroma compounds identified in a milk-based high-protein beverage’ at the International Conference on Food Oral Processing.

To date, little is known about the how older adults detect the scent of single aroma compounds. This is a critical gap in our knowledge, because changes in our sense of smell may decrease our enjoyment of food, which in turn could lead us to eat less and increase the risk of undernutrition. The abstract concludes that age-related impairments in olfaction were common in older adults, and that detection thresholds were aroma-specific.

Sophie Lester: “When developing foods for older adults, it is important to consider age-related impairments. Meeting specific preferences as a consequence of altered flavour perception has an impact on how much elderly enjoy food and stimulates sufficient nutrient intake.”

Click here to download the poster.

The need for international mouthfeel terminology in the medical nutrition industry

Product texture and mouthfeel contribute significantly to product perception and appreciation. However typical mouthfeel language is not specific for medical nutrition.

The need of an international mouthfeel terminology for medical nutrition has been identified but till now results are different between countries and care providers. A structured terminology is important for developing safe and optimized medical nutrition products.

The goal of the study was to develop a hierarchically structured vocabulary of mouthfeel attributes elicited by medical nutrition.

Mouthfeel wheel

Thanks to expert panelists who had generated vocabulary and performed a Taxonomic Free Sorting (TFS) task, we developed a mouthfeel wheel showing a hierarchical representation of umbrella terms and mouthfeel attributes. TFS was used to identify distinct groups of attributes describing key products characteristics and to understand the connections between the attributes and provide an overarching hierarchy through individual responses.

The structured vocabulary should be used as a communication tool between parties aiming to improve, select and/or develop MNP with optimal mouthfeel characteristics for medical nutrition users.

Click here to download the poster.

International Conference on Food Oral Processing
The 5th International Conference on Food Oral Processing was held from 1 to 4 July at the University of Nottingham, UK. The conference attracted over 200 scientists from both industry and academia to discuss the latest findings in the physical, physiological and psychological aspects of eating and oral processing. Click here to read more about the conference.

S.S. Schiffman Ph.D. (1993) Perception of taste and smell in elderly persons, Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, 33:1, 17-26.
G. Sergi, et. Al. (2016) Taste loss in the elderly: Possible implications for dietary habits, Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, 57:17, 3684-3689.