University of Copenhagen - Articles and news items

The ‘Sense-Award’ scoring system: Objective adjudication for a multi category food awards competition

Issue 2 2011  •  13 May 2011  •  Maurice G. O’Sullivan, Mary P. O’Sullivan and Joseph P. Kerry, Food Packaging Group, School of Food and Nutritional Sciences, University College Cork and Derek V. Byrne, Department of Food Science, Sensory Science, University of Copenhagen

Increasingly, food preference has become based on the mantra ‘we taste therefore we eat’, with consumers consistently seeking quality information across the product spectrum1. Thus, the use of ranking indications from food awards has become important to a product’s impact in the marketplace, particularly artisanal foods2. However, do these awards in sensory terms designate objective assessment? The Blas na hÉireann Irish National Food Awards have been held for the last three years on the first weekend of October in Dingle County Kerry as an integral part of the annual Dingle Food and Drink Festival. Upwards of eight hundred products have been submitted to the awards competition each year and scored from approximately 200 companies across over 27 categories.

New types of milk-based products by high pressure

Issue 4 2010  •  26 August 2010  •  Vibeke Orlien, Head of Research Group Food Chemistry, University of Copenhagen

High pressure technology offers new opportunities for nutritional and healthy milk products. Based on skim milk and added whey protein or hydrocolloids, high pressure makes it possible to produce milk products ranging from yoghurtlike to pudding-like, but without the sour taste and with less sugar. Moreover, high pressure is a minimal food processing method which addresses consumer preferences and reflects the human ethics of natural, tasty, clean-labelled and eco-friendly products.

The production of various types of milk products like yoghurts involves, in short, a souring processing step to form the gel network and typically requires bacterial fermentation of a starter culture and an incubation step involving heat that can be relatively time consuming. In such a sour milk gel, the gelation is based on the acid-induced dissociation of the casein micelles and the thermal-induced denaturation of the whey protein β-lactoglobulin (β-Lg) which link together and form a strong gel network. It has been discovered that aqueous solutions of β-Lg and of whey protein subjected to high pressure (HP) treatment also form gels, and the perspectives of designing new types of dairy products blaze up.

High-pressure – meat processing and milk gels

Issue 1 2009  •  20 February 2009  •  Professor Vibeke Orlien, Associate Professor Food Chemistry, University of Copenhagen

Consumers prefer food products, convenience products and ready-to-eat meals to have the taste of being freshly made. Moreover, it must be nutritious, safe, of high quality and originate from sustainable production. High-pressure (HP) technology can be utilised to its full potential as a minimal processing method to address consumers preferences and reflect the human ethics of natural, tasty, clean-label and eco-friendly products. For example, it is possible to produce chicken meat with improved oxidative stability and high water holding capacity and neutral milk gels with less sugar. The future new type of HP-food products may be just around the corner.


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