Effect of silica gel desiccant on the sensory quality of rice crackers
Suweesha Amarakoon, Senevirathne Navaratne
Sensory profile of a food plays an important role on the subconscious expectations we have while we eat. This study represents an overview of the sensory quality of rice crackers that is affected by the amount of silica gel desiccant used in packaging. Desiccants such as silica gel are used inside the package of hygroscopic food products to reduce the moisture absorption by the product itself. Four treatments were made by inserting 5g, 2.5g, 1g of silica gel in breathable sachets to each 100g rice cracker packet along with a control sample. These were stored under ambient conditions. Rice cracker packing material combination was 20µ BOPP+12µ MET PET+25µ CO EXCPP with 60µ thickness. Moisture content measurement and sensory evaluation were performed in every two month intervals up to 6 months’ storage. 21 semi-trained panelists were used as the sensory panel. Ranking method with a 5-point hedonic scale was used to measure the variation of sensory stimuli pertained to appearance, odor, taste, crispiness and overall acceptability of rice crackers. Ranking data were recorded and analyzed using one-way ANOVA in MINITAB 17 statistical software. At 0.05 significance level, rice cracker 100g packed with 5g silica gel was confirmed as the highest consumer preferred sample with the least deterioration in its sensory properties.