Flavor Analysis


Functionality and Flavor
Improving visual appeal is the primary purpose for caramel colour in a food or beverage system. Caramel colour also:
  • Protects other ingredients from light deterioration
  • Emulsifies flavor agents in the preparation of soft drink concentrates
  • Standardizes batch-to-batch colour variation
Customers have traditionally specified colour intensity, colloidal charge, pH, specific gravity, and viscosity as their key Coffeerequirements for caramel colour. Flavor is not traditionally a key component as caramel colour can be characterized as only slightly bitter or having a slight burnt sugar note. Some caramel colours do, however, demonstrate flavor differentiation and can impact the flavor of foods and beverages.
The taste of caramel colour is generally bitter, with Class III and IV caramels delivering more bite than Class I caramels. Class I caramel colours contain flavor compounds similar to those found in chocolate and broiled meat. Some Class I caramel colours contain high levels of key compounds found in roasted coffee beans. Spray drying of coffee results in a loss of some of these flavor compounds, so DDW # 624 powder serves as a coffee flavor extender in instant coffee and cappuccino mix.
Off Flavors
Since the impact of caramel colour on taste in a finished beverage can be significant, consistent caramel colour of the highest quality should be selected. Some manufacturers’ caramel colours contain off flavors that adversely impact the final product. The following cause off flavors in caramel colour:
  • Substandard raw materials used in manufacturing
  • Improper manufacturing techniques
  • Improper storage and packaging
For example, D.D. Williamson chooses not to package its caramel colour in steel, epoxy-lined drums due to the risk of iron contaminating the flavor.
D.D. Williamson  has both quality control and R&D laboratories for caramel colour testing, research, and evaluation. Testing includes the use of both a LC/MS (liquid) and a GC/MS (gas chromatograph coupled with a mass spectrometer) instrument for quality component analysis, flavor compounds, and use in determining adulterated products. Sensory testing is also performed to ensure the highest quality products.
D.D. Williamson now has the ability to manufacture custom caramel colour to complement a customer’s final product. Examples would include a flavored caramel for soy sauce, a malt-flavored caramel for beer, a molasses-flavored caramel for baking, a coffee-noted caramel, etc. In addition, D.D. Williamson now produces a number of caramelized flavors such as Caramelized Sugar flavor, Apple flavor, and Onion flavor.
D.D. Williamson can also provide an array of caramel colour products to match competitors caramel colours, which will give customers the highest quality and more consistenyly performing caramel they need. D.D. Williamson is the technical leader in caramel colour and can provide the applications assistance needed to provide customers with the best products and service anywhere in the world..