Friday, 19 September 2008

Olfactory to improve taste

What people think they taste is solely the result of inhaling odours. The tongue recognises only the five basic taste varieties. All other tastes are the result of odours. Odours enter, to put it simply, the nostril to the nasal cavity, where they are detected by the olfactory receptors and after that translated by the brain into tastes. The person gets the perception that the aroma he smells will be the taste he is ready to experience.

That’s why a seducing aroma tells a consumer he wants the product. If consumers are let the choice, 80% will choose the product he can see as well as smell. With 70% of the purchase decisions made in the supermarket aisles it is time for the consumer product manufacturers to incorporate the olfactory sense with the visual and tactile ones.

The olfactory packaging refers to the packaging which activates the sense of smell. Stirring these emotional senses might have as goal seducing the consumer to buy, but on the other hand in a pre-programmed form initiate a quality and/or aroma improvement leading to a better taste of the product to be consumed.

Three smelling systems
The cosmetic and personal care industries certainly have mainly interest in seducing the consumer. At this moment roughly three systems are known, which give a fragrance to the packaging. The first is printing the packaging with special inks, which release the required odour for a longer period. The second is encapsulating the fragrance in the packaging material.
Several companies (see side-bar) developed co-polyesters and copolymers using small microscopic channels in which the pre-set odour is incorporated in the material composition. The third, a more modest option, is the scratch-and-sniff label. Here the fragrance is ´packaged´ within the label, which the consumer can scratch to experience the odour.

In all three options the aroma or fragrance experienced by the consumer is just an imitation of what is really in the package. Never is the aroma of the product itself sniffed.
With exception of the ...... keep reading