Sensory testing can be done either in a laboratory or by asking consumers about their preferences. Sensory issues are usually appearance, smell, taste and texture.
In the Research Centre WANDER’s NABLE project, sensory evaluation is used to assess the quality of strawberries, tomatoes and leafy vegetables irrigated with nanobubble water compared to products produced with normal irrigation. The NABLE project uses analytical laboratory measurement to assess the differences in quality between berries and vegetables grown in different ways by a trained panel. The panel consists of SAMK staff who are trained to taste the basic tastes: sweet, salty, bitter, sour and umami.
The sensory evaluation is based on international standards and its reliability can be assessed statistically. The assessor must have good senses, good concentration and the ability to distinguish and describe characteristics. The assessor must be interested in sensory evaluation and open to new tastes. The sensory evaluation is carried out in a quiet place where disturbances are minimized. The first NABLE sensory assessment will be the sweetness of strawberries before Midsummer and will continue in the autumn with the taste of tomatoes.
NABLE is an EIP (European Innovation Partnership) project funded through the Rural Development Programme for Mainland Finland 2014-2020 from the additional funds of the EU Recovery Instrument for the period 2021-2022 and administered by the Häme ELY Centre.