An Evaluation of the Sensory Properties of Irish Grown Organic and Conventional Carrots (Daucus carota L.) and mushrooms (Agaricus bisporus).

Clare Gilsenan, Dublin Institute of Technology
Roisin Burke, Dublin Institute of Technology
Catherine Barry-Ryan, Dublin Institute of Technology
Grace O'Sullivan, Dublin Institute of Technology
Eoin Pierce, Dublin Institute of Technology

Document Type Working Paper

Proceedings from the 38th Annual Research Conference on Food, Nutrition and Consumer Sciences, UCC, Cork. September 2008, p49.


There is a general belief among consumers that organically farmed foods are superior in sensory quality when compared to conventionally produced foods. The aim of this study was to establish whether perceptible sensory differences exist between Irish grown organic and conventional carrots and Irish grown organic and conventional mushrooms. Three batches of organically farmed carrots and mushrooms and three batches of conventionally produced carrots and mushrooms were tested. A semi-trained panel (n=10) evaluated the sensory properties of fresh raw carrot (appearance, aroma, texture, taste) and fresh raw mushroom (appearance, aroma, texture). Data acquisition and analysis was performed using Compusense five®. A comparison between both types of carrot found no significant differences (P>0.05) for the sensory attributes of appearance, aroma, texture and taste. Sensory evaluations conducted on organic and conventional mushrooms found no significant differences (P>0.05) for cap colour, firmness, and appearance, aroma and texture acceptability values. However, our sensory data indicated that the organic mushroom samples had darker gills (P<0.05) and a stronger mushroom aroma (P<0.05). Overall, Irish grown organic and conventional carrots and mushrooms did not show any significant differences in all studied sensory acceptability categories.