A scoring system for evaluating the total quality of a food product (Tamr) based on consumer preferences was developed and tested for validity. The development process started with a survey among adult date consumers in the United Arab Emirates to identify their perception of characterizing total quality of date fruit among specified attributes. The consumer subjective ranking of eleven specified attributes was used to derive a quantitative weighted factor for each attribute. Based on the weighted factor a quantitative scoring guide was developed. A panel evaluation of five date varieties (Khlas, Barhee, Boumaan, Fard and Ruzeiz) was conducted as an application of the developed scoring system. Panel evaluation results and consumer ranking and preference data of the same varieties compared well. In both panel evaluation and consumer ranking, Khlas variety was perceived to have the best quality by far among the tested varieties. Barhee and Boumaan varieties showed no significant variation between them in both panel evaluation and consumer ranking, and both were in the second order of preference. Variety Ruzeiz was in the lowest order of preference in both panel evaluation and consumer ranking. Testing of the method indicated its appropriateness in predicting total quality of a food product as would be perceived by consumers.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Research was partially funded by a grant from the University Research Board of the United Arab Emirates University.
- Consumer prefaces
- Fruit dates
- Quality Control