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Correlating physiochemical quality characteristics to consumer hedonic perception of traditional Doenjang (fermented soybean paste) in Korea

Kim, Mina K., Chung, Hyun‐Jung, Bang, Woo‐Suk
Journal of sensory studies 2018 v.33 no.6 pp. e12462
acid value, alcohols, ammonium nitrogen, color, consumer acceptance, consumer preferences, enzyme activity, microbial activity, nitrogen, pH, quality control, reducing sugars, salinity, sensation, soybean paste, sugar content, sweetness, titratable acidity, water content, South Korea
The objective of this study was in twofold: (a) to determine the physiochemical quality characteristics of Doenjang samples manufactured by different methods and (b) to determine the relationship between these characteristics and consumer acceptability. Furthermore, consumer acceptability of the Doenjang samples according to the participant's region of residency (northern vs. southeastern) was investigated. A total of six Doenjang samples were included in this study: Two commercially produced Doenjang products (C1 and C2), three traditionally produced Doenjang products (T1, T2, and T3), and one Japanese‐style Doenjang product (M1). Physiochemical properties including moisture content, pH, salinity, acid value, titratable acidity, amino type nitrogen (NH₃‐N) content, reducing sugar and total sugar content, alcohol content, and color measurements (L*, a*, b*), were conducted. In addition, enzymatic activities and microbial activities were analyzed. Consumer acceptance testing on these Doenjang samples was conducted in different locations of South Korea (north and southeast). No differences in consumer preference were found based on the testing location (p > .05). However, differences in physiochemical quality parameters that are important for different region were observed. Consumer preference in the northern region was driven by color‐related attributes while consumer preference in the southeastern region was driven by the sweetness of the Doenjang samples. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS: Physiochemical quality characteristics are practically easy‐to‐collect data in the food manufacturing plant for routine quality control process. This study provided the potential to use of objective physiochemical quality control‐related data to predict the consumer preferences of Doenjang, and also reported the different quality attributes that drive consumer preferences of Doenjang according to the location of residency. Outcome of this study: (a) allows Doenjang industry to predict the consumer preferences according to the quality‐related attributes of traditional Doenjang and (b) provides information to strategically design the Doenjang products according to the consumers' preferences in different regions of Korea.