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Flavor Creation: 9 Lessons in How to Win

Contact Author John Bedford, Mastertaste Inc.
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Once a flavorist, always a flavorist! I have spent more time managing and directing than I have creating flavors over the past three decades, though I still believe I could put on my white coat, walk into the laboratory and make a better flavor than any of those whom I employ for the task.

Much has been written about the flavor creation process from a flavorist’s perspective; however, our purpose here is to refrain from brainstorming the ultimate flavors and to focus more on managing the process. This takes the perspective of flavor creation management. Experience has shown that certain strategies work, and others do not. Consider the following statements:

“Customers know exactly what they want. They offer clear and concise articulation of how the flavor should taste and work in their product.”

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“Flavorists are fully attentive, focused, with an eye on the end results, deadlines and simple formulations.”

If all of the above were true, then the need for managing the creative process would be easy and handled by a clerical staff or a computer program. However, experience tells me that this is not the case. Flavor creation is still very much a subjective process — open to interpretation. Managing this creative endeavor is paramount to avoid the waste of scarce resources.

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