Wac 2008

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Wac 2008

  1. 1. Wine Consumer Flavour Preferences Isabelle Lesschaeve, WAC 2008, 27-29 March, Beaune (France)
  2. 2. Outline  Literature review on development of food preference – Application to wine  Sensory and cognitive dimensions of wine preference  Summary and Conclusion
  3. 3. Development of Food Preference  Three major determinants of food choice and preference (Rozin, 1991): – Biological factors – Cultural factors – Individual/Psychological factors
  4. 4. Development of Food Preference  Biological Factors – Innate likes for sweet and dislikes for bitter and sour foods (Birch, 1982) – In utero nutrition impacts future child’s preference (Schaal, 2006) – Preference increases with exposure and familiarity (mere exposure theory, Zajonc 1968)
  5. 5. Development of Food Preference  Individual factors – Adolescents develop liking for bitter food and beverages (e.g. beer) – Genetic traits  Sensitivity to the bitter compound PROP could influence both positive and negative sensations in alcoholic beverages
  6. 6. How do we learn to like wine?  Introduction to wine in early adulthood  Wine can: – Taste sour and bitter – Smell unfamiliar (food) aromas  Oak, floral, petroleum – Feel astringent and irritating Wine could fit the “unpalatable substance” category (Rozin, 1986)
  7. 7. How do we learn to like wine?  Liking for unpalatable beverage : – Is developed by associative learning  Environmental and socio-cultural factors – Results in desirable post-digestive consequences
  8. 8. How do we learn to like wine?  Socio-cultural factors – New world consumers versus old world – Symbolic value of wine
  9. 9. Determinants of Wine choice  “Taste” is one of the most important factors cited by consumers for choosing wine (Thompson and Vourvachis, 1995; Charters, 2003)  Tasting wine prior purchase is not common practice – Purchasing wine is a risky endeavour, because of taste uncertainty (Mitchell and Greatorec, 1988)
  10. 10. Sensory dimensions of likes and dislikes  Traditional market research techniques – Wine experts – Me2, sales volume – “Taste” test, “one sip test” Ask consumers to describe what they like or dislike – Focus groups
  11. 11. Sensory dimensions of likes and dislikes  Traditional market research techniques – Research has shown that consumer language can be misleading – Merlot wine study (Lesschaeve (2006):  When consumers liked the wine, they liked its oak character  When consumers disliked the wine, they disliked the oak character  Liked oak=Vanilla/toasted oak  Disliked oak=Smoky oak, burnt
  12. 12. Sensory dimensions of likes and dislikes  New approach: – Blends sensory and market research techniques – Produces preference map – Consumers still rate their overall liking – Wine description is collected from a trained sensory panel (Descriptive Analysis) – Multivariate statistics are used to explain or predict consumer flavour preference [McEwan 1996; Lesschaeve et al. 2001, 2004]
  13. 13. Authors Wine category Attribute analysis Consumer evaluation Aromas driving liking Lesschaeve et White wines Descriptive analysis CLTs, 361 consumers. * Sweet, fruity, berry, al. 23 with 12 trained 9 pt hedonic scale overall aroma intensity, Chardonnays; panelists; vanilla toasted oak, 14 wine styles 16 aroma attributes alcohol, spicy oak, lingering after-taste Yegge et al. White wines: DA with 14 trained CLT, with 126 *Fruity, floral, Caramel, 12 inexpensive panelists; consumers. spice, oak Chardonnays 10 aroma attributes 9 pt hedonic scale Frøst et al. Red wines: DA with 12 trained CLT, with 57 consumers. Vanilla/oak, Canned 12 inexpensive panelists; 9 pt hedonic scale vegetables, and Green red wines, 7 9 aroma attributes olives, berry, butter, varieties or leather blends Lesschaeve et Red wines: Descriptive analysis CLT tests, with 41 *Burnt, smoky, pungent, al. 5 Merlot wines with 8 trained consumers. grassy, cut wood, butter panelists; Liking on 100 pt linear scotch, vanilla, rawwood 17 aroma attributes scale Lesschaeve et White wines: Descriptive analysis CLT with 115 *earthy, asparagus, al. 8 inexpensive with 12 trained consumers. banana, butter, pine white wines panelists; Liking on a 100 pt linear musty, mushroom 37 aroma attributes scale Lesschaeve et White wines: Descriptive analysis CLT with 46 consumers. *Blind: al. 4 Riesling wines with 10 trained Liking on a 100 pt linear high rubber and musty panelists; scale. pungent, earthy 22 aroma attributes Blind and informed *Informed: conditions earthy, rubber, rose lemon, grapefruit, pungent, cooked apple, sweet, licorice, raisin * Depends on consumer segments
  14. 14. Sensory dimensions of likes and dislikes  Example [Lesschaeve, 2007] – Four Riesling wines – 45 Ontario consumers assessed their liking (10 cm hedonic scale) – Descriptive analysis by 12 trained panelists with 44 flavour attributes and 2 replicates. – Both sets of data were analysed to produce a preference map
  15. 15. Riesling preference map Riesling prefmap - Blind condition 10 Raisin Sherry like 5 Honey F2 (9.56 %) WB Liking 2 Licorice_F Licorice CS Earthy-Musty Honey_F Apple cooked Melon Caramel Raisin_F cooked_F Apple Vanilla 0 Rose_F -10 -5 0 5 10 15 Rubber WI Pungent Lemon Liking 1 Yeasty Peach_F Grapefruit HP -5 F1 (90.44 % )
  16. 16. Is it just a matter of taste?  Riesling study had two parts 1. Consumers tasted the wines blind (without any information, except that the wines were Riesling) 2. Consumers tasted the same wines, but with some information
  17. 17. Riesling preference map with Information Riesling preference map - Informed condition 20 L3 Raisin WI Honey 10 Sherry like Melon Caramel Licorice_F CS Raisin_F F2 (22.33 %) Honey_F Licorice Pungent Vanilla Apple cooked 0 -30 -20 -10 Earthy-Musty 10 0 20 L1 30 WB Apple cooked_F Rubber Grapefruit_F Yeasty Rose_F -10 Lemon HP Peach_F Grapefruit L2 -20 F1 (64.53 %)
  18. 18. Wine = Flavour + Image Flavour = sensory attributes (appearance, aroma, taste etc.) Image = label, bottle shape, advertising, etc.
  19. 19. Non sensory factors affecting preference  External information: – packaging design, label (front/back) – identifiers associated to quality: brand name, appellation-region of origin (VQA, AOC), country/region of origin, price, award, expert rating
  20. 20. Cognitive factors affecting likes and dislikes  Consumer characteristics: – Involvement, knowledge, and familiarity with the product “higher involvement consumers utilise more information and are interested in learning more, while low involvement consumers tend to simplify their choices and use risk reduction strategies”. (Lockshin, 2006) 3 dimensions of involvement: product involvement, brand decision involvement and purchasing involvement (Lockshin et al, 1997)
  21. 21. Cognitive factors affecting likes and dislikes  Consumer characteristics: – demographics, lifestyle, self-perception  Baby boomers. Generation X and Y
  22. 22. Cognitive factors affecting likes and dislikes  Consumer characteristics: From Hughson et al. 2004  1. Red & White Wines -- Segment 1 (‘Sensory explorers').  2. Red & White Wines -- Segment 2 (‘Classics').  3. Red & White Wines -- Segment 3 (Imaginers').  4. Red Wines Only -- Segment 4 (‘No Frills').
  23. 23. Source: Project Genome, 2008
  24. 24. Non sensory factors affecting preference  Context of choice or consumption  Societal factors: – image, prestige, mystic, symbolic, values
  25. 25. Conclusions  Understanding of consumer flavour segments enable producers : – to enhance the chance of repeat purchase – to target niche markets with a specific wine style.  Elucidating wine active compounds is critical to understand sensory drivers of liking and develop targeted wine styles
  26. 26. Conclusions  In foodstuff categories, – when product does not meet the sensory profile expected by consumers, marketing cues cannot usually fool consumers.  The wine category is different. – Non sensory factors still have an impact on consumer choice behaviours and may enable consumers to forgive any dissonance on the sensory profile.
  27. 27. Conclusions  Non sensory factors impact: – Is it stable over time? – Have consumers developed strategies to relate external information to sensory properties? – Do they rely on their memories? (brand, taste) – What is the influence of context (E.g. Tasting room) and repeating tasting?  More research is still needed

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