Student Places Second

Posted by ODI Secretary | On: Jul 25 2019

ODI would like to congratulate Sara Maruyama. She placed second in the American Dairy Science Association competition for dairy foods graduate students. Sarah is an OSU Food Science student.

The project was entitled “Clean label: the naturalness perception and acceptance of dairy ingredients” by Sara Maruyama, Nadia Streletskaya, Lisbeth Goddik, and Juyun Lim

Here is an abstract summary of the project:

Consumer demand for natural foods continues to grow and dairy processors have answered the calling offering many clean label products. However, regulatory agencies have not clearly defined “natural” labeling, and accordingly the industry and consumers may have different interpretations of the term. A current OSU study aims to measure consumers’ naturalness perception of dairy ingredients and to investigate factors affecting their responses. An online-administered survey asked over 500 frequent yogurt consumers to evaluate naturalness, acceptability, and familiarity of common yogurt ingredients including various sugars, stabilizers, preservatives, and coloring agents. Respondents also rated the acceptability of the ingredients when their functions and sources were given. In terms of perceived naturalness, we found that coloring agents and preservatives varied substantially within each category, with some ingredients perceived as natural and others as unnatural. In contrast, sugars were perceived as generally natural, while all stabilizers were perceived as less natural, with rankings statistically not different within the ingredient category. Further examination of the interquartile ranges for each ingredient revealed that consumers strongly agreed on the degree of naturalness for some ingredients (e.g., vegetable juice, red 40), but not others (e.g., pectin, fructose). Considering acceptability of each ingredient, providing ingredient function had little impact on the ratings. However, providing ingredient source significantly improved the degree of ingredient acceptability. These findings will be discussed in detail in an upcoming publication along with the impact of heterogeneity in socio-demographic and personal preference on the perceived naturalness and acceptability of common yogurt ingredients.

This research is supported by BUILD, Dairy West.

View the official announcement here.

Photo by Waldemar Brandt on Unsplash