BSF’s News Digest January 2024

In the spotlight

Spray drying encapsulation of essential oils: Insights on various factors affecting the physicochemical properties of the microcapsules ǀ Flavour & Fragrance Journal
Spray drying is a fast, simple, and efficient method for encapsulating active molecules like essential oils, plant extracts, fragrances, and enzymes within natural polymers and emulsifiers. This technique provides chemical and physical stability, preventing susceptibility to external conditions. The article discusses the impact of process parameters and materials on the physicochemical properties, encapsulation efficiency, moisture content, bulk density, agglomeration properties, and thermal stability of microencapsulates of essential oils.

Do coffee beans help ‘refresh’ your nose? ǀ The Perfume Society
In various fragrance boutiques and department stores, you’ve perhaps come across little bowls and jars of coffee beans and wondered what these are for. Perhaps you’ve even been told by well-meaning staff (or fragrance-loving friends) that these are to ‘refresh’ your nose after smelling too-many scents? So: do coffee beans ACTUALLY help ‘re-set’ your sense of smell?

Zu zweit sind wir am kreativsten: Warum kleine Teams oft die besten Ideen haben ǀ Sciexx
Research shows that creative ideas often emerge from conversations between two people, with smaller research teams publishing groundbreaking findings more frequently than larger groups due to people subordinating to group consensus.

Helium is an essential material for research and medical equipment, but it’s nonrenewable and difficult to recycle  ǀ The Conversation
Helium shortages have disrupted high-tech industries. Factors like potential sale of U.S. reserves, sanctions against Russia, and plant breakdowns have exacerbated the situation, leading to increased costs and disruptions. Scientists are optimistic about addressing the helium shortage by searching for room-temperature superconductors, establishing new facilities in Tanzania, and ensuring widespread access to helium recovery equipment.

New coffee genetic map promises better brews  ǀ The BBC
Researchers in Italy have created the world's most comprehensive genetic map of Arabica coffee, potentially aiding in the breeding of new coffee crops and enhancing plant adaptation to climate change.

The chemist who told us to put salt in our tea explains why she did it  ǀ New Scientist
After causing an international incident by suggesting that adding salt to your cup of tea will improve it, chemist Michelle Francl says it’s great to see everyone talking about chemistry

Cacao fruit trending in beer and wines ǀ Food Navigator
Cacao fruit, or cocoa fruit, is drawn from the same pod as cocoa beans. Normally thrown away, the juice, pulp and peel of the pod can be used as a sweetener in a range of products. Across Europe and beyond, cacao fruit has appeared recently in a range of beer and wine products.

Eliminating off notes in plant-based meat alternatives ǀ Food Navigator
Off notes or flavour challenges in meat-free products has been a headache for the food industry for years, but new research could put that problem to bed once and for all.

A two-run heart-cut multidimensional gas chromatography method using flame ionization and mass spectrometry for automated and robust determination of nearly complete wine aroma-volatile profiles ǀ Journal of Chromatography A
A quantitative analytical method capable of determining the concentrations of 81 aroma-relevant wine volatiles covering nine orders of magnitude was developed and validated in this study.

Using a machine learning regression approach to predict the aroma partitioning in dairy matrices ǀ Processes
This study introduces a regression approach to predict the partition coefficient of aroma compounds in dairy matrices, based on various physicochemical properties. The approach uses data cleaning, grouping, pre-processing, and regression methods. The top three features identified are log P, specific gravity, and molecular weight.

Whisky aroma: The bizarre reality of how we smell ǀ LinkedIn
Do we actually have two noses?

Can humans smell tastants? ǀ Chemical Senses
Although studies have shown that olfaction may contribute to the perception of tastant, literature is scarce or circumstantial, especially in humans. This study aims to (i) explore whether humans can perceive solutions of basic prototypical tastants through orthonasal and retronasal olfaction and (ii) to examine what volatile odor compounds underlie this ability.

La chimie de la dégustation ǀ SAQ
What happens chemically and physiologically when we taste a wine? What explains why we smell this or that aroma and why some people don't perceive the same aromas as we do? In any case, how does it work?

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