CBCI and the Pathway to Extraordinary Flavor
As we focus on product development there are control points we employ to evaluate and optimize flavors. Given our goal is to satisfy consumer needs, it is absolutely paramount that we understand our target consumer’s eating habits, preferences and how they perceive taste and flavor. The efforts we undertake to discern consumption and food interests are vital to successful outcomes.
Early on in our process we develop persona descriptions to fully develop the profile of our client’s customer target and summarize their food needs and passions. We translate this into attributes that help guide us to a “crave-able” product. We use our BASIC model – Balance, Acidity, Sweetness, Intended flavor and texture, Color and Saltiness — to express the taste and flavor nuances we aim to achieve. Our culinary team has a unique understanding of how to manipulate these five taste and flavor characteristics to drive superior flavor. This is both an art and a science – a disciplined approach that creates an experimental design with multiple variables tested so we completely understand how each taste nuance and flavor reacts to the other. Through this process we create a clear understanding of how each ingredient affects product quality and allows us to dial in a formula that delivers the best and most refined product concept. To confirm our outcomes we use a hedonic rating system with our chefs and scientists to objectively measure if we met the client’s objectives. When possible we prefer to test all of our assumptions with consumers.
In sum, our process ranges from initial exploratory research, to original product ideation, to ingredient sourcing, to culinary process, and then formulating the highest level of taste preference for the client’s target market.