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USA: Sensory Analysis and Consumer Science

Intern: Katherine Esthefany Alfaro Martínez, Food Technology

Katherine, a Salvadoran student, completed her internship at the Sensory Laboratory of the University of Tennessee in the USA, focusing on the science of sensory and consumer analysis, a method used by companies to make decisions about products.

Katherine collaborated with various companies seeking consumer opinions about their food, allowing her to understand how senses work, through analysis, in evaluations of odor, taste, color. These evaluations help determine if a change in a formula will generate losses or improve the sales of a food product on the market versus the creation of a new product.

During her internship, Katharine worked with Dr. Curtis Luckett, from whom she learned that it is essential to carry out evaluations that measure the sensory capacity of people, and that the methodologies can be revised to obtain better results.

In addition, she assisted in the laboratory with the development of an investigation on how consumers perceive wine through odor.

Katherine has learned through this experience that values learned at Zamorano help its students function in all areas of the work force. “Proactivity, discipline and the desire to learn differentiate you from others, being a person who can positively influence through actions. The most valuable experience I gained was understanding the world’s problems from different perspectives. In El Salvador, I would like to work with small and medium-sized companies, looking for ways to improve their products so that they are of higher quality,” she said.

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