OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

Origins of taste and smell to be discussed at Corvallis Science Pub

11/05/2012

CORVALLIS, Ore. – An Oregon State University food scientist will discuss how taste and smell interact to determine what foods we like, as well as those that we hate, during a presentation at the Corvallis Science Pub on Monday, Nov. 12.

Juyun Lim of the OSU Department of Food Science and Technology will present her research on how humans sense food and beverage flavors and offer testing samples to help the audience explore their own food preferences.

The presentation will begin at 6 p.m. at the Old World Deli, 341 S.W. Second St., in Corvallis. It is free and open to the public.

“The science of flavor is complicated,” Lim said. “Some of the players include sweet and bitter tastes, which are detected solely on the tongue. It also encompasses smell, such as the rich odor of vanilla, which is detected exclusively in the nose. And then there are tactile sensations, which include touch, such as the texture of crème brûlée and irritation, like the burn of hot peppers.

“Our understanding of how we perceive the flavor of foods and why we like some but not others is still in its infancy.”

Sponsors of Science Pub include Terra magazine at OSU, the Downtown Corvallis Association and the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry.