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 September 2005 Tech News

Sensory Evaluation Committee Prepares New Standard on Descriptive Panel Performance

ASTM International Committee E18 on Sensory Evaluation of Materials and Products is currently working on a proposed new standard, WK8435, Practice/Guide for Measuring and Tracking Sensory Descriptive Panel and Panelist Performance. WK8435 will be used to assist sensory professionals in selecting, screening, and identifying training needs for new and existing panels and assessors. In addition, information in the proposed standard will allow the sensory professional to document the credibility of panelist data for their clients.

The proposed new standard, which is under the jurisdiction of Subcommittee E18.03 on Sensory Theory and Statistics, is intended to be a comprehensive document that will provide guidelines for monitoring and assessing overall panel and individual panelist performance. “It is recognized within the sensory community that the performance of sensory panels, as well as that of individual assessors, must be monitored in order to ensure the validity of sensory data and identify training needs, says Janet Curtis, sensory analyst, fragrance division, Firmenich, Inc. “While some aspects are mentioned in various articles and covered in many courses, no one document addresses why, when and how one should track performance. The proposed standard will address all of these aspects.”

Work on the proposed new standard is well under way, but Curtis notes that anyone with experience in the subject of sensory descriptive panels is invited to participate in the subcommittee’s next meeting on the document in October.


Technical Information:
Janet Curtis, Firmenich, Inc., Princeton, N.J.
Phone: 609/452-1000, ex. 1301

ASTM staff: Scott Orthey
Phone: 610/832-9730

Upcoming Meeting: Oct. 25-27,
Washington, D.C.

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