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    Sensory profile and consumer acceptability of Ziziphus mauritiana and processing product in Savannah region of Cameroon

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    Aim: Ziziphus mauritiana is an endemic fruit spread in the savannah region of Cameroon. The fruit, locally called Jaabi, is harvested dry and consumed as such or processed into a local cake named Yaabande, using three baking techniques (sun drying, steam baking and stifle baking). The aim of the study is to characterize the sensory profile and consumer acceptability of the fruit and its processed product, in order to evaluate the determinant of their quality attributes as influenced by ecotype, origin and processing method. Place of Study: The study was carried out in the Department of Food Science and Nutrition, University of Ngaoundéré, Cameroon. Methodology: Physico-chemical analysis, sensory profile by a semi trained panel, and consumer acceptability of the fruits and their processed products were undergone through collection of two ecotypes of the fruit (Jaabi Dakamji and Jaabi Lammuji) from four areas (Garoua, Mora, Maroua and Mokolo). African and non African consumers were used for the consumer tests. Results: Sensory analysis differentiated the fruits by ecotype and origin, with the Dakamji ecotype appearing more homogeneous whatever the origin. The processed cakes differed mainly by their texture, depending on the baking method, with chewing texture for sun processed method, while samples from steam and stifle baking were more firm in mouth. Meanwhile, all samples were acceptable at comparable level corresponding to pleasant character, the sweet taste constituting the main criteria for consuming the products, both for African and non African consumers. In this respect Dakamji ecotype was sweeter, due to its higher sugar content, while the sweetness of Lammuji ecotype was lowered by its acid content. Conclusion: Jaabi and Yaabande samples are globally acceptable by consumers, whatever the origin and the variety. Development of products emphasising the original taste of Jaabi and standardisation of processing techniques appear as some main aspects of the market development of the fruit
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