Identifying Breeding Priorities for Blueberry Flavor Using Biochemical, Sensory, and Genotype by Environment Analyses.
ABSTRACT: Breeding for a subjective goal such as flavor is challenging, as many blueberry cultivars are grown worldwide, and identifying breeding targets relating to blueberry flavor biochemistry that have a high degree of genetic control and low environmental variability are priorities. A variety of biochemical compounds and physical characters induce the sensory responses of taste, olfaction, and somatosensation, all of which interact to create what is perceived flavor. The goal of this study was to identify the flavor compounds with a larger genetic versus environmental component regulating their expression over an array of cultivars, locations, and years. Over the course of three years, consumer panelists rated overall liking, texture, sweetness, sourness, and flavor intensity of 19 southern highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum hybrids) genotypes in 30 sensory panels. Significant positive correlations to overall liking of blueberry fruit (P<0.001) were found with sweetness (R2 = 0.70), texture (R2 = 0.68), and flavor (R2 = 0.63). Sourness had a significantly negative relationship with overall liking (R2 = 0.55). The relationship between flavor and texture liking was also linear (R2 = 0.73, P<0.0001) demonstrating interaction between olfaction and somatosensation. Partial least squares analysis was used to identify sugars, acids, and volatile compounds contributing to liking and sensory intensities, and revealed strong effects of fructose, pH, and several volatile compounds upon all sensory parameters measured. To assess the feasibility of breeding for flavor components, a three year study was conducted to compare genetic and environmental influences on flavor biochemistry. Panelists could discern genotypic variation in blueberry sensory components, and many of the compounds affecting consumer favor of blueberries, such as fructose, pH, ?-caryophyllene oxide and 2-heptanone, were sufficiently genetically controlled that allocating resources for their breeding is worthwhile.
Project description:Seven lots of commercially available Navel oranges grown in California were evaluated with flavoromic, metabolomic, sensory descriptive analysis, and consumer testing techniques to identify sensory and chemical drivers of liking. Eight identified chemical clusters related to numerous sensory attributes and consumer preferences. Differences in adult and child preferences led to the discovery of six consumer clusters (four adult and two child). Sweetness, overall flavor, sourness, fruity flavor, and juiciness were identified as the main sensory drivers of liking for the consumers. Fructose, glucose, and proline were among the compounds that best explained perceived sweetness while sourness was correlated with citrate and ascorbate. Perceived fruity flavor increased with higher concentrations of ethanol. We conclude that consumers differ in their preferences for Navel oranges and desire fruit that is higher in both sweetness and sourness.
Project description:Fresh strawberries (Fragaria x ananassa) are valued for their characteristic red color, juicy texture, distinct aroma, and sweet fruity flavor. In this study, genetic and environmentally induced variation is exploited to capture biochemically diverse strawberry fruit for metabolite profiling and consumer rating. Analyses identify fruit attributes influencing hedonics and sensory perception of strawberry fruit using a psychophysics approach. Sweetness intensity, flavor intensity, and texture liking are dependent on sugar concentrations, specific volatile compounds, and fruit firmness, respectively. Overall liking is most greatly influenced by sweetness and strawberry flavor intensity, which are undermined by environmental pressures that reduce sucrose and total volatile content. The volatile profiles among commercial strawberry varieties are complex and distinct, but a list of perceptually impactful compounds from the larger mixture is better defined. Particular esters, terpenes, and furans have the most significant fits to strawberry flavor intensity. In total, thirty-one volatile compounds are found to be significantly correlated to strawberry flavor intensity, only one of them negatively. Further analysis identifies individual volatile compounds that have an enhancing effect on perceived sweetness intensity of fruit independent of sugar content. These findings allow for consumer influence in the breeding of more desirable fruits and vegetables. Also, this approach garners insights into fruit metabolomics, flavor chemistry, and a paradigm for enhancing liking of natural or processed products.
Project description:Fruit texture is a primary selection trait in southern highbush blueberry (SHB) breeding to increase fresh fruit postharvest quality and consumer acceptance. A novel crisp fruit texture has recently been identified among SHB germplasm. In this study, we developed a common set of descriptors that align sensory evaluation of blueberry fruit texture with instrumental measures that could be used for quantitative measurements during pre- and postharvest evaluation.Sensory and instrumental characteristics were measured in 36 and 49 genotypes in 2010 and 2011, respectively. A trained sensory panel evaluated fresh fruit based on five common textural attributes in 2010 and 2011: bursting energy, flesh firmness, skin toughness, juiciness and mealiness. Instrumental measures of compression and bioyield forces were significantly different among cultivars and correlated with sensory scores for bursting energy, flesh firmness and skin toughness (R > 0.7, except skin toughness in 2011), but correlations with sensory scores for juiciness and mealiness were low (R < 0.4).The results of sensory and instrumental measures supported the use of both compression and bioyield force measures in distinguishing crisp from standard-texture genotypes, and suggest that crisp texture in SHB is related to the sensory perception of bursting energy, flesh firmness and skin toughness.
Project description:Consumer hedonic scores for potatoes were linked to sensory characteristics to understand the underlying consumer segments, flavor and texture preferences and attitudinal associations regarding potatoes. Consumers were asked to evaluate liking on a 9-point hedonic scale for 12 cultivars of potatoes. Sensory findings were collected by using a consensus-based descriptive analysis approach for the same cultivars. Segmentation analysis procedure identified three subgroups of consumers with different overall liking patterns, indicating variability in the acceptance of different potato cultivars. Drivers of liking were identified for respective segments by using preference mapping. Dissimilar features were found important in determining potato liking patterns. Purple Majesty, Masquerade and Rio Colorado cultivars were found most liked by respondents, while Russian Banana were found to be liked the least. Tuber color, price, variety name on package, color of peel, and being locally produced were found to be important factors in purchasing decisions.
Project description:Improved fruit quality and prolonged storage capability are key breeding traits for blueberry (Vaccinium spp.) fruit. Until now, breeding selection was mostly oriented on the amelioration of agronomic traits, such as flowering time, chilling requirement, or plant structure. Up until now, however, the storage effect on fruit quality has not been extensively studied, mostly because objective and handy phenotyping tools to evaluate quality traits were not available. In this study we are proposing a novel phenotyping protocol to support breeding selection and quality control within the entire blueberry production chain. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and texture traits, were measured by Proton Transfer Reaction- Time of Flight- Mass Spectrometry (PTR-ToF-MS) and a texture analyzer respectively, taking into consideration the influence of prolonged storage. The exploitation of the genetic variability existing within the investigated blueberry germplasm collection (including both southern and northern highbush, hybrids, and rabbiteyes) allowed the identification of the best performing cultivars, based on texture and VOCs variability, to be used as superior parental lines for future breeding programs. The comprehensive characterization of blueberry aroma allowed the identification of a wide array of spectrometric features, mostly related to aldehydes, alcohols, terpenoids, and esters, that can be used as putative biomarkers to rapidly evaluate the blueberry aroma variations related to genetic differences and storability. In addition, this study revealed a lack of straightforward relationship between harvest and postharvest quality features, that might be genotype-dependent.
Project description:Provitamin A and pre-formed vitamin A compounds are essential micronutrients for humans. However, vitamin A deficiency (VAD) affects the health status of nearly 50% of populations in Southeast Asia and sub-Saharan Africa and is especially pronounced in preschool children and pregnant women. The objective of this research was to determine an acceptable flavor/ingredient combination to produce a palatable food product that incorporates sweet potatoes, peanut paste, and chickpeas. We sought to determine the acceptability of the three product formulations and to determine the influence of demographic data on ratings for the sensory attributes of each sample. To address VAD issues, three formulations of a product incorporating sweet potato puree (to increase ?-carotene content), pure peanut butter (to provide fat for ?-carotene absorption), and chickpeas (to provide a complete protein source), were developed: (1) an unflavored control, and two formulations with added natural seasonings: (2) curry-flavored, and (3) pumpkin spice-flavored. Sensory analysis of the three products showed that the curry-flavored product received the highest acceptability in terms of overall liking, flavor, texture, and appearance (p < 0.001). Since the demographic effect was not statistically significant (p > 0.05), it is highly likely that the curry-flavored product can be implemented in other countries or areas with high acceptability.
Project description:Color, aroma, sweet, and bitter tastes contribute to the sensory perception of grapefruit juice. Consumers differ about liking grapefruit. A reason is the bitter taste that characterize the fruit. The objective was to determine the effect of varying the color (red or yellow), aroma (two levels), bitterness (three levels), and sweetness (three levels) of a grapefruit-like model beverage, on consumers' liking and perception of its sensory properties. The sensory profiles of thirty-six grapefruit-like beverages, created on the basis of a factorial design, has been described. Consumers rated their liking of color, aroma, and flavor of the twelve most diverse beverages. Bitter and sweet levels of the beverages had a significant effect on the flavor and aftertaste attributes. Aroma concentration had a significant effect on the majority of the sensory attributes. Color had a significant effect on perception of some of the aroma attributes, as well as the grapefruit's flavor intensity. Consumers liked the red beverages more than the yellow ones, and those with low aroma over the high aroma intensity. Consumers preferred the low bitter/high sweet beverages. Pungent and grapefruit aroma were found to be negative drivers for liking of the aroma. Sweet and citrus flavors were found to be positive drivers and sour and bitter flavors were found to be negative drivers of flavor-preferences (or liking) of the tested beverages.
Project description:The changes of volatile composition and other quality traits of blueberry during postharvest storage were investigated. Blueberries were packaged in vented clam-shell containers, and stored at 0 °C for 0, 15 and 60 days, followed by storage at room temperature (25 °C) for up to 8 days for quality evaluation. The firmness, pH, and total soluble solids increased by 8.42%, 8.92% and 42.9%, respectively, after 60 days of storage at 0 °C. Titratable acidity decreased 18.1% after 60 days of storage at 0 °C. The volatile change was monitored using headspace-solid-phase microextraction-gas chromatography-quadrupole time-of-flight-mass spectrometry (HS-SPME-TOF-MS) and off-odor was evaluated by sensory panel. Volatile compounds generally showed a downward trend during cold storage. However, the subsequent shelf life was the most remarkable period of volatile change, and was represented by the strong fluctuation of ethyl acetate and the rapid decrease of terpenoids. Extending storage from 15 to 60 days under cold condition still resulted in an acceptable odor. However, subsequent storage at higher temperature resulted in a quick deterioration in sensory acceptability. The results proved that cold storage was a reliable way to maintain the quality of blueberry, and flavor deterioration during subsequent shelf life was more fatal to the blueberry flavor.
Project description:Tenderness, juiciness, and flavor have been associated with consumer acceptance of beef, lamb, and pork. Drivers of consumer liking are interrelated across these species, but there are differences in consumer preferences. Animal age, animal diet, and subsequent marbling impact consumer liking across species. For beef, consumer research prior to the 1990s showed that tenderness was the main driver of liking. Consumer tenderness and juiciness liking are highly correlated. More recent research has shown that as overall tenderness improved and tenderness variation decreased, flavor has become a more important driver of beef consumer liking. Flavor is affected by consumer preparation methods, familiarity with different flavor presentations, and animal production systems. Animal diet impacts consumer perception of beef tenderness and flavor, especially when comparing forage-fed versus grain-fed beef. Flavor preferences vary across countries more so than preferences for beef based on consumer tenderness preferences and are most likely influenced by the consumption of locally produced beef and the flavor-derived type of beef traditionally consumed. Drivers of pork consumer liking have been shown to be affected by pH, color, water holding capacity, animal diet, and the presence of boar taint compounds. While tenderness and juiciness continue to be drivers of consumer liking for pork, flavor, as impacted by animal diet and the presence of boar taint compounds, continues to be a driver for consumer liking. For lamb, the flavor, as affected by diet, and animal age continue to be the main drivers of consumer liking. Lamb consumers vary across countries based on the level of consumption and preferences for flavor based on cultural effects and production practices.
Project description:Texture and flavor are currently the main challenges in the development of plant-based dairy alternatives. To overcome them, the potential of microorganisms for fermentation of plant-based raw materials is generating great interest in the food industry. This study examines the effect of Lactobacillus rhamnosus, LGG® (LGG® is a trademark of Chr. Hansen A/S) on the physicochemical properties of fermented soy, oat, and coconut. LGG® was combined with different lactic acid bacteria (LAB) strains and Bifidobacterium, BB-12® (BB-12® is a trademark of Chr. Hansen A/S). Acidification, titratable acidity, and growth of LGG® and BB-12® were evaluated. Oscillation and flow tests were performed to analyze the rheological properties of fermented samples. Acids, carbohydrates, and volatile organic compounds in fermented samples were identified, and a sensory evaluation with a trained panel was conducted. LGG® reduced fermentation time in all three bases. LGG® and BB-12® grew in all fermented raw materials above 107 CFU/g. LGG® had no significant effect on rheological behavior of the samples. Acetoin levels increased and acetaldehyde content decreased in the presence of LGG® in all three bases. Diacetyl levels increased in fermented oat and coconut samples when LGG® was combined with YOFLEX® YF-L01 and NU-TRISH® BY-01 (YOFLEX® and NU-TRISH® are trademarks of Chr. Hansen A/S). In all fermented oat samples, LGG® significantly enhanced fermented flavor notes, such as sourness, lemon, and fruity taste, which in turn led to reduced perception of the attributes related to the base. In fermented coconut samples, gel firmness perception was significantly improved in the presence of LGG®. These findings suggest supplementation of LAB cultures with LGG® to improve fermentation time and sensory perception of fermented plant-based products.