Apple flavor and its effects on sensory characteristics and consumer preference

Journal of Sensory Studies, February 10, 2022 

Abstract: Jordan R. MacKenzie, Lisa M. Duizer and Amy J. Bowen. The focus within the apple industry is to identify varieties most preferred by consumers. To help with this, it is necessary to emphasize the discovery of flavor perceptions responsible for consumer preference in apples. The present study aimed to determine which flavor attributes are associated with different apple varieties, determine which apple varieties consumers prefer, and to determine which flavor attributes are contributing to consumer preference. Over two subsequent years, a trained sensory panel (n = 10, n = 15) evaluated 27 and 28 varieties, respectively. Intensity ratings of taste, flavor, and texture characteristics for each apple variety were recorded. This data was paired with an untrained consumer hedonic evaluation (n = 226) using a subset of apple varieties (n = 16). Results revealed that two large groups of apple consumers exist. Group 1 (29%) emphasized the importance of texture, while Group 2 (49%) was primarily driven by sweet taste, and honey and floral flavors with less focus on texture.

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