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sensory testing

Project: An evaluation of traditional and novel sensory and consumer methods suitable for product characterisation

When developing new products, it is traditional to use trained sensory panels to evaluate product characteristics. The information they provide is thorough and is considered to be objective, but the approach is expensive, and ultimately it is the consumer's opinion that matters. Therefore, consumers are also used to screen concepts and assess products for liking and preference, with the datasets being combined in subsequent and detailed analysis. Given the reduced lead times associated with product development, rather than using the sensory and consumer approaches independently, there may be scope to develop an integrated approach that combines the merits of sensory and consumer methods to provide a comprehensive but quick and cost-effective procedure for use in the product development process.

This project will evaluate and validate the many new consumer and sensory methods available and give information on which ones can be used or adapted and integrated for product development work. It will also investigate different statistical methods for evaluating the data produced by the methods.

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