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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Identification of Volatile Date Components and Use of Multivariate Analysisto Distinguish Date Varieties

item Reynes, Max - CIRAD-FLHOR FRANCE
item Lebrun, Marc - CIRAD-FLHOR FRANCE
item Shaw, Philip

Submitted to: Food Quality Journal
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: January 29, 1996
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: In the Mediterranean region fresh dates are a staple in the diet of many people and products from dates have rarely been accepted. Some varieties are used only as animal feed because of inferior flavor. More knowledge of date flavor and flavor components is needed to make better use of inferior quality dates and to enhance acceptability of date products. This study shows differences in flavor composition of three date varieties, a high quality date (Deglet Noor), an intermediate quality date (Alligh) and a poor quality date (Kentichi). The study also shows the potential in isolating good flavors from Kentichi dates to be used in date products, thus making this poor quality variety more acceptable for human consumption.

Technical Abstract: Pentane extracts which possessed strong date-like aromas were obtained from three date varieties and analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Thirty-six volatile components possessed aromas and flavors which could contribute to the sensory characteristics of dates, suggesting that a combination of volatile components is responsible for the desirable flavor of dates. Headspace gas chromatographic analysis of fresh dates from each of the three varieties combined with multivariate analysis involving eleven of the known constituents was used to distinguish differences among the varieties.

Last Modified: 4/22/2015
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