How The Color Of Food Packaging Affects Your Sense Of Taste

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There may be more to food than meets the eye, but in many cases, what your eyes perceives can have a major effect on whether you find that food appetizing or not. A new study has shown that the color of food packaging can influence how much people enjoy the food it contains.

A study published in the Journal of Food Science made headlines recently when it revealed that the color of a confectionary sweetener’s packaging could determine how sweet people thought it would be – regardless of what kind of sweetener it actually was. Researchers at Louisiana State University ran an experiment involving over 500 volunteers and five different types of sweetener: sucrose (natural sugar), sucralose, aspartame, saccharin, and stevia.

The participants were broken into different groups. One group had non-colored packets with the brand name printed on them, while the other groups had colored packets with the brand names printed on them. In the experiment, the different colors corresponded to a different color: green (stevia), blue (aspartame), white (sucrose), pink (saccharine), and sucralose (yellow).

Each participant was presented with five samples of tea in which each sweetener would be tested. This is where the researchers noticed something incredible: the participants had radically different reactions to the sweeteners depending on whether their sweetener packets were colored or not.

In the control group, the test subjects found the sucrose packet to be the sweetest and the most satisfying. The participants who received the colored packages, however, had much more varied reactions. They reported that the blue aspartame packets left them feeling “disgusted,” and the green stevia packets were more pleasing. Everyone seemed to say something different, but the only thing that had been changed was the sweetener packet color.

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