Added value of implicit measures in sensory and consumer science

René A. de Wijk, Lucas P.J.J. Noldus

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review


Implicit measures, such as heart rate, skin conductance and facial expressions, and explicit measures, such as the more traditional liking scores, are increasingly combined in laboratory food studies. In these laboratory studies, food products are typically evaluated blind, that is without brand information, and in a context that is unlike the physical and social contexts in which foods are normally consumed. Results of these laboratory studies often show little additional value of implicit compared to explicit measures. It is argued that implicit measures of food experience are not just a more expensive and more complex equivalent of traditional explicit measures but that both types of measure provide complementary information. Whereas explicit measures capture especially the sensory aspects of the food itself, implicit measures capture especially the total food experience from pre- to postconsumption, which not only relates to the food itself but also to factors such as the physical and social context in which foods are consumed in real-life. This requires that implicit measures should also be applied outside the conventional laboratory habitat. Fortunately, this becomes increasingly possible with current technical developments.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDigital Sensory Science
Subtitle of host publicationApplications in New Product Development
EditorsJ.B. Lawlor, J.A. McEwan, D. Labbe
PublisherElsevier Masson
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9780323952255
ISBN (Print)9780323952262
Publication statusPublished - 4 Aug 2023


  • explicit measures
  • food
  • implicit measures
  • sensory

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