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Physiology of sensory perception

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Dairy product sensory evaluation includes the critical examination and interpretation of important sensory attributes of the given product. Examples are the observation of the color and symmetry of a wheel of cheese, the odor characteristics of cottage cheese after it has been stored at roomtemperature for several days, the relative degree of creaminess of whole milk and the tanginess of a spoonful of yogurt - all of the aforementioned are components of sensory evaluation. Humans possess and utilize five primary senses for perceiving stimuli: sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell. Of these human senses, taste, smell and chemical/pain sense respond to chemical stimuli, with taste and smell considered to be the most primitive (Brown and Deffenbacher, 1979). Other human senses include temperature sensation (heat and cold), pain, visceral hunger, thirst, fatigue and balance. Consumption and appreciation, the study of their physiology and human reaction to stimuli is fundamental to sensory evaluation. This chapter will commence with a general discussion of sensory attributes and perceptions. A more detailed discussion of physiology involved in sensory perception will follow, beginning with vision and concluding with chemesthesis (chemical mouthfeel). The final section will describe the sensory evaluation of dairy products. © 2009Springer-Verlag New York.




Ross, C. F. (2009). Physiology of sensory perception. In The Sensory Evaluation of Dairy Products (pp. 17–42). Springer US.

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