Using sensory science to place the consumer at the heart of product innovation

10 May, 2016

Vitafoods Europe - 360˚ of innovation: Redefining the future of innovation in the food & beverage industry.

11th May 2016, Vitafoods Europe, Geneva: Leatherhead Food Research, a leader in technical solutions and consulting expertise in the world of food & drink, announces it is presenting at Vitafoods Europe on the importance of placing the consumer at the heart of product innovation as part of its 360˚ of innovation initiative.

Sensory science is used by companies to encourage consumers to respond to a product or brand through the use of sensory cues including sight, smell, touch, taste and heading. It is so powerful that it can create subconscious triggers about a product and can be used to help with product improvement, quality control, production process change, competitor benchmarking and new product development.

Consumer and sensory science is a key part of Leatherhead’s new 360˚ of innovation initiative launched in conjunction with its sister companies Oakland Innovation and Sagentia. It aims to redefine innovation in the food & beverage sector and is being showcased at Vitafoods Europe, taking place in Geneva this week.

As part of the launch, Cindy Beeren, VP, Sensory, Consumer & Market Insight at Leatherhead, is today presenting on the Vitafoods Centre Stage 14:30 – 14:50 on sensory-focused design. She will be discussing the use of consumer insight as a driver for product development.

Cindy comments: “At Leatherhead, we believe product development has to be a holistic process which considers the consumer, the market conditions and the product concept. This can only come from a close collaboration between sensory & consumer scientists who understand their consumers and product developers who have a high degree of skill and knowledge in ingredient and product behaviour to ensure product stability and microbiological safety.”

360˚ of Innovation aims at delivering strategic thinking together with practical know-how to help food & beverage companies de-risk their innovation process. It supports the full innovation lifecycle, from market landscaping and opportunity identification, through product concepting, supply chain concerns, regulatory and food safety aspects, and finally production and post launch support.

Chris Wells, Managing Director for Leatherhead Food Research, comments: “The food & beverage industry really is facing some fundamental challenges which could change the industry beyond recognition. We are seeing a focus on ingredients and a growing trend towards healthy foods that promote physical and mental health and challenges to existing supply chains and business models. This is all happening against a backdrop of food safety, quality, regulatory and cost pressures. There is now great opportunity for companies in the sector to respond to these changes and they can look for inspiration both in-sector and from outside of the industry where similar technology-led changes are taking place.”


Melissa Shone

Director of Marketing, Science Group plc

T: +44 1223 875205

E: [email protected]

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