Chemistry & Applications: Natural Flavors Presentation

Originally Published: July 7, 2016
Last Updated: February 22, 2021

“Chemistry & Applications: Natural Flavors” was presented at the 2016 Clean Label Conference by Keith Cadwallader, Ph.D., Professor of Food Chemistry, Dept. of Food Science and Human Nutrition, University of Illinois, Urbana–Champaign.

Abstract: The taste and aroma of a food plays a crucial role in the perception of its quality. Even as many consumers shy away from products with the word “artificial” on their ingredient lists, the expectation remains that “clean label” foods and beverages will continue to possess desirable sensory properties. This presentation looked at some of the sources, basic chemistry, food matrix interactions and impact of processing on flavorings categorized as natural. A better understanding of these facets of flavoring use leads to more effective and efficient use natural flavoring compounds.

An excerpt from the written summary of this presentation: The experience of flavor is integrated with overall product expectation, and it includes color and texture. Several studies show clear flavor linkages to a color, like red with cherry or strawberry, or green with lime.

Experts understand that naturals often give lower flavor intensity than artificial flavors, so additional natural substances may be needed to boost flavor intensity. Additionally, with natural source material, variation can be expected. Supplies can also be uncertain (i.e., if produced in a geopolitically unstable part of the world).

Natural flavors often contain non-flavor constituents that are not stable and can lead to off-flavors, like limonene in citrus, which tends to oxidize very easily.

Click here to view the written summary “Natural Flavors Chemistry & Applications” of this presentation.

Click on the button below to download a PDF of Cadwallader’s PowerPoint presentation “Chemistry & Applications: Natural Flavors”.

click to download powerpoint icon