San Michele all'Adige

Fondazione Edmund Mach, IASMA Centro Ricerca e Innovazione

Dipartimento Qualità Alimentare e Nutrizione
via E. Mach, 1
San Michele all'Adige 38010
telephone +39 0461 615186
fax +39 0461 650956

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Research activities and team

The "Sensory Quality" research group and the "Volatile compounds" facility belong to one of the 4 departments of FEM's Research and Innovation Centre, the Food Quality and Nutrition Department, which focuses on nutritional, technological, and sensory valorisation of agri-food products.
Their activity aims at developing and applying innovative and multidisciplinary methods for the investigation of food in order to understand and predict consumers' choices by means of: i) the objective evaluation of products' perceptible characteristics and of consumers' responses; ii) the investigation of the perceptive and cognitive processes of the multisensory experience underlying consumer-product interaction and iii) the correlation of sensory and consumer data with instrumental food characterisation.
Beyond its fundamental relevance, the research activity supports the development of new products and production processes and the valorisation and preservation of typical products. These goals are in the more general frame of the development local and national productive potential and the improvement of diet quality by taking into account the requests of consumers who pay more and more attention to the quality of food and who look for food products with high quality standards, both in terms of health and pleasure.


The group gets together researchers and technicians with different specific expertise in the field of sensory analysis (analytic methods with trained panels and consumer tests) and of innovative instrumental techniques for the investigation of food quality aspects related to sensory perception, such as the monitoring of flavour compound release or the assessment of physical-mechanical characteristics.
In the case of flavour release, the well established gas chromatographic methods are complemented by on line, high sensitivity analysis by direct injection mass spectrometric methods and, in particular, Proton Transfer Reaction - Mass Spectrometry (PTRMS). PTRMS is characterised by an extremely high sensitivity and time resolution and by the possibility to obtain quantitative data for several compounds simultaneously. This allows the non-destructive analysis of food samples and the monitoring of volatile compound emission real-time as, for instance, during food consumption (nose space).
The expertise in the fields of multisensory perception and of consumer science make it possible to investigate the cognitive and perceptual dynamics underlying individual responses and to better measure and understand the drivers of consumer choices.
The use of advanced chemometric and data-mining techniques is a characterising aspect of the activity of the research group.



Flavia Gasperi (
Eugenio Aprea (
Isabella Endrizzi (
Franco Biasioli * (
Andrea Romano * (

M. Luisa Demattè (
Jose Sanchez del Pulgar * (

Emanuela Betta (

PhD students
Maria Laura Corollaro (
Luca Cappellin * (

Volatile Compound Facilities