The Sensobus from Puratos Corp., Cherry Hill, N.J., is a fully equipped mobile sensory analysis lab that can be driven within the contiguous United States and Canada to conduct tailor-made sensory analysis for Puratos’ customers. The Sensobus collects data from consumers in pre-defined locations as they are on their way to or from their daily shopping trip.
About 300 consumers can take part in the food research each day, and Puratos’ mission is to obtain the opinions of more than 25,000 consumers in the unit’s first year of operation. The mobile unit is outfitted with eight sensory booths where consumers are presented with a selection of bakery, patisserie or chocolate products. Questions that will be asked include: “Does the product look appetizing?” “Which bread do you prefer?” and “How much would you pay for this chocolate cake?”
Answers are used to calculate a data map to indicate consumer preference. In combination with a mapping of the product characteristics, Puratos says it will be able to determine and explain which products best match consumer expectations so bakeries can determine which new products to offer.
This is Puratos’ third Sensobus worldwide and is manned by a team of specialized sensory analysts backed by a research and development group to help turn the analysis results into products.