Training of panellists for the sensory control of bottled natural mineral water in connection with water chemical properties

Food Chem. 2013 Nov 1;141(1):625-36. doi: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2013.02.093. Epub 2013 Mar 7.


As bottled mineral water market is increasing in the world (especially in emergent and developed countries), the development of a simple protocol to train a panel to evaluate sensory properties would be a useful tool for natural drinking water industry. A sensory protocol was developed to evaluate bottled natural mineral water (17 still and 10 carbonated trademarks). The tasting questionnaire included 13 attributes for still water plus overall impression and they were sorted by: colour hues, transparency and brightness, odour/aroma and taste/flavour/texture and 2 more for carbonated waters (bubbles and effervescence). The training lasted two months with, at least, 10 sessions, was adequate to evaluate bottled natural mineral water. To confirm the efficiency of the sensory training procedure two sensory groups formed the whole panel. One trained panel (6 persons) and one professional panel (6 sommeliers) and both participated simultaneously in the water tasting evaluation of 3 sample lots. Similar average scores obtained from trained and professional judges, with the same water trademarks, confirmed the usefulness of the training protocol. The differences obtained for trained panel in the first lot confirm the necessity to train always before a sensory procedure. A sensory water wheel is proposed to guide the training in bottled mineral water used for drinking, in connection with their chemical mineral content.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Drinking Water / chemistry*
  • Education / methods*
  • Female
  • Food Industry / education*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Minerals / analysis
  • Quality Control
  • Taste*
  • Water / chemistry*
  • Workforce


  • Drinking Water
  • Minerals
  • Water