Yogurts that reformulated to increase appeal or nutritional benefits, must remember to consider how flavour and aroma components are affected by such modifications, says a new review.
The article, published in Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety, focuses on the influence that different parameters and modifications have on the aroma and taste components of yogurt.
“The popularity of yogurt as a food component depends mainly on its sensory characteristics, of which aroma and taste are most important,” said the authors of the review, led by Winny Routray from McGill University, Canada.
“There are many compounds and other factors affecting the overall yogurt aroma, the study of the effect of different factors on yogurt flavour can help food technologists to make desirable changes to maintain the popularity of yogurt as a diet food in the future,” they added.
Yogurt generally contains at least 3.25% milk fat and 8.25% solids not fat. Yogurt can be low fat (0.5% to 2% milk fat) or non-fat (less than 0.5% milk fat), which is more preferred because of health concerns.
The authors noted that the development of processing technologies and growing competition in the food market means the urge to provide nutritious food with appealing flavour properties has increased.
“The aroma, body, and taste of yogurt and other cultured dairy products can vary depending on the type of culture and milk, amount of milk fat and non-fat milk solids, fermentation process, and temperature used,” said the reviewers.
They added that flavour – taste and odour – is not only a characteristic property of food that controls consumer acceptance, but it is also associated with the feeling of wellbeing.
Routray and team said that increasing consciousness about health and increasing competition in the food market, means that scientific studies are taking place around the world to obtain new products.
“Before trying any new food innovation in the market, sensory evaluation either by descriptive methods or methods using different sensory analyzers such as the electronic nose is increasingly encouraged,” they said.
“In this era of functional foods, of which yogurt is an important part, individuals’ worries regarding the new technologies used and the modernity of the processes might influence the acceptance of the food products,
“There is one common point of concern on which all researchers concentrate, whenever they modify any food product they have in mind, the ultimate flavour and related sensory properties,” said the reviewers.
They added that decreases in fat content, and its replacement by texturising agents, can lead to change in the distribution of flavour molecules within the product and to differences in flavour perception.
Source: Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety
Volume 10, Issue 4, pages 208–220, doi: 10.1111/j.1541-4337.2011.00151.x
“Scientific and Technical Aspects of Yogurt Aroma and Taste: A Review”
Authors: W. Routray, H.N. Mishra