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 July 29, 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 July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre

Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre

AP (July 29, 2014) Food scraps and other items left on the grounds by picnickers brings unwelcome visitors to the grounds of the world famous and popular Louvre Museum in Paris. (July 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jane Goodall Warns Great Apes Face Extinction

Jane Goodall Warns Great Apes Face Extinction

AFP (July 29, 2014) The world's great apes face extinction within decades, renowned chimpanzee expert Jane Goodall warned Tuesday in a call to arms to ensure man's closest relatives are not wiped out. Duration: 00:58 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

Newsy (July 29, 2014) Researchers have found certain facial features can make us seem more attractive or trustworthy. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Rat Infestation at Paris' Tuileries Garden

Rat Infestation at Paris' Tuileries Garden

AFP (July 29, 2014) An infestation of rats is causing concern among tourists at Paris' most famous park -- the Tuileries garden next to the Louvre Museum. Duration: 00:54 Video provided by AFP
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