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DLG Test Center Food at Anuga FoodTec

Fruit and milk beverages under scrutiny in Cologne

Frankfurt, Germany, 13 March 2012 - Join the DLG as they conduct live quality tests on fruit and dairy beverage products on 27 and 28 March 2012 at Anuga FoodTec. As the joint organiser of the show, the DLG will invite some 130 international experts to the Cologne Congress Center East CC as they put a range of fruit and milk beverage products to stringent quality assessment tests. 
Key information will be provided on the technical aspects of production and taste value of each of the food products, which will then be assessed on sensory qualities. These sensory requirements include visual (colour), olfactory (smell) and gustatory (taste) dimensions and in certain product areas. consistency and structure.
The expert testers work in specific sectors in the food industry who have volunteered their time to provide impartial and critical assessments for these product tests. To ensure objectivity, all product samples to be tested are first repackaged and relabeled so that there is no indication of any brand whatsoever. Over 30,000 products undergo such tests at the DLG Test Center Food every year.
“As a professional platform for food technologies, Anuga FoodTec offers a range of synergies across the food industry that makes it particularly relevant as a venue to showcase our expert food tests,” says Rudolf Hepp, Managing Director of the DLG Test Center Food
“As the joint organiser of the exhibition, the DLG provides critical content and professional support for a vast programme of forums, conferences and seminars that encompass numerous expert topics and forums. We want to facilitate opportunities for everyone in the industry to meet, network and find out the latest trends in their own and related fields,” adds Hepp.
Fruits come alive
Modern fruit beverages come in ever expanding ranges of flavours and product types, including juices, fruit wines, mulled wines, as well as the more familiar fruit-based lemonade but also taking part in the test are cola drinks. While flavour, freshness and overall taste are key requisites of a successful fruit-based beverage, sensory appeal and colour are equally important as these add to a product’s quality and consumer impressions. Packaging is important in retaining fruity flavour and freshness.
The DLG is this year celebrating its 60 anniversary of testing fruit juice. This activity has now developed to become Europe’s largest independent quality test for fruit juices. The tests are held every year and cover fruit juices, nectars, fruit juice beverages, spritzers, fruit wines and vegetable juices. In addition to the sensory analysis conducted by experts, the products are subjected to microbiological and chemical-physical examinations.
All these factors are taken into account at the DLG’s quality tests for fruit juice-based drinks that will take place on the first two days of Anuga FoodTec 2012. Some 800 products samples will be tested live. A colourful display of refilled drinks await.
Fruit creates a sensory experience for the consumer in every sense – in terms of sight, taste, smell and texture. All sensory tests are therefore conducted bearing in mind the total sensory experience from a consumer's viewpoint. “When one thinks of fruit, vibrant colours, sweet tastes and unique fragrances come to mind,” says Thomas Burkhardt, project manager for fruit juice products. “Our experts are well-trained with the extensive experience that allows them to carefully detect each nuance of fragrance and flavour in the product. It is important that our tests captures this subjective experience related to the sensory quality of the beverage,” adds Burkhardt.
Delivering dairy excellence
At Anuga FoodTec, the DLG tests for milk beverages are carried out over two days. Cocoa-flavoured and strawberry milk drinks will be tested on 27th March. The second day, 28 March, will see tests on fermented milk and dairy products such as kefir, yoghurt and milk desserts.
“Just as with fruit products, sensory criteria such as colour, smell and taste are important for the dairy category,” says Inka Scharf, Project Manager for dairy products. “However, unlike fruit-based beverages, the nuances of smell and taste are a lot more subtle for milk and dairy products. Additionally, the consistency plays a significant role for these products. How does the product feel on the tongue and in the mouth are also important measurements. Our best experienced experts are trained to detect these faintest of subjective nuances and sensory experiences,” adds Sharf.
In addition to the keen noses and tastes of these independent experts, all products undergo further tests in the laboratory. For example, these tests can examine the taste of yoghurt, whether a cream dessert is micro-biologically pure, or whether a certain product possesses the typical taste, odour and consistency relevant to the specific variety. The samples are called up from the individual producers without advance notice and sampled by experts. The laboratory tests complement the expert assessments which capture the subjective aspects associated with the sensorial experience of consuming a food product.
Currently, some 85% of all dairy companies in Germany send in their products for these internationally recognised tests. Producers from all over Europe also take part in these international quality tests.
The sensory quality evaluations of both the fruit and dairy categories are based on the scientifically recognized DLG 5-point scheme ®, developed by the DLG for the sensory evaluation of product quality. Only products that meet stringent quality standards flawlessly will be given the maximum grade of 5.0. Further test criteria include laboratory analyses and packaging controls.
Products that pass the DLG tests will receive a DLG-award in gold, silver or bronze. The results of the international quality tests will be released in late May at
Note to editors: To book your appointment with the testing experts, please contact Malene Conlong. Details below.
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Malene Conlong

International media and communications manager