Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Findings On Sour Taste

Date:
July 11, 2007
Source:
USDA/Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
Food manufacturers may soon have more control over the amount of sour taste that comes through in a variety of acidified food products.

Fresh-packed dill pickles were made using the same organic acids used in the test solutions. Taste tests showed that the sour taste intensity increased in direct proportion to the total number of all organic acid molecules in the pickles that had an attached hydrogen ion.
Credit: iStockphoto/Jack Puccio

Food manufacturers may soon have more control over the amount of sour taste that comes through in a variety of acidified food products.

The study, led by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) food technologist Roger McFeeters, will appear in the August issue of the Journal of Food Science. He and colleagues in the ARS Food Science Research Unit, Raleigh, N.C., worked with North Carolina State University-Raleigh researchers. ARS is the U.S. Department of Agriculture's chief scientific research agency.

Sour is one of only five primary human taste sensations, and is stimulated by organic acids. Some organic acids are naturally present in foods, such as the citric acid in oranges, malic acid in apples and, as a result of fermentation, the lactic acid in yogurt. These and other organic acids may also be used as food ingredients.

Because taste is a subjective perception, nine volunteers were trained to evaluate the intensity of sourness, plus several other sensory attributes. The volunteers were presented with test solutions containing eight different organic acids—either with one acid at a time, or as a mixture containing three of the acids.

Organic acids are molecules characterized by the presence of carboxyl groups, which is what makes them acidic. Surprisingly, molecules of all eight organic acids were perceived to be equal in sour taste provided that at least one carboxyl group in a molecule had a hydrogen ion attached to it. When no hydrogen ion was attached, no sour taste was detected at all.

These chemical relationships were also tested in a food. Fresh-packed dill pickles were made using the same organic acids used in the test solutions. Taste tests showed that the sour taste intensity increased in direct proportion to the total number of all organic acid molecules in the pickles that had an attached hydrogen ion.

This new insight will help food processors more efficiently control sour taste intensity when formulating acidified foods, such as sour candies, cream dressings, dill pickles, dough breads and tangy beverages.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA/Agricultural Research Service. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "New Findings On Sour Taste." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 July 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070709103854.htm>.
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. (2007, July 11). New Findings On Sour Taste. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070709103854.htm
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "New Findings On Sour Taste." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070709103854.htm (accessed September 20, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

Chocolate Museum Opens in Brussels

AFP (Sep. 19, 2014) Considered a "national heritage" in Belgium, chocolate now has a new museum in Brussels. In a former chocolate factory, visitors to the permanent exhibition spaces, workshops and tastings can discover derivatives of the cocoa bean. Duration: 01:00 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Elephant Undergoes Surgery in Tbilisi Zoo

Raw: Elephant Undergoes Surgery in Tbilisi Zoo

AP (Sep. 18, 2014) Grand the elephant has successfully undergone surgery to remove a portion of infected tusk at Tbilisi Zoo in Georgia. British veterinary surgeons used an electric drill to extract the infected piece. (Sept. 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins