How does “deliciousness” look in the modern world where many of us have access to enough, and even an excessive amount, of food?
Does the current environment change the way we feel “deliciousness?” Do people from different regions feel “deliciousness” at the same intensity for a certain taste?
Let’s take a look at sugar.
AISSY, a Tokyo-based taste consulting firm advising various food-related businesses, conducted an analysis on how much sugar is contained in cookies and chocolates in the US and Japan.
AISSY used a globally patented “Taste Analysis Machine.” It replicates a human’s taste sensing system and translates “deliciousness” into computed results (often as a radar chart) using the five tastes (sweetness, saltiness, sourness, bitterness and umami) as variables.
AISSY selected and compared 10 products from the US and Japan, and measured the sugar content using their Taste Analysis Machine. Just to be clear, none of the products were from “healthy” or “lean” product lines. Popular brands people buy for pure enjoyment were chosen.
The results were significant.
Whereas Japanese products resulted in a sugar level of 3-4, American products resulted in a level of 4-5. Level 3 translates to a sugar content of 3%, 4 translates to 5.1%, and 5 translates to an alarming 9%.
Sugar content of 10 sweets sold in the US and Japan (Data provided by AISSY)
Although we shouldn’t make a direct correlation, sugar content level agrees with the statistics of the rate of obesity. Japan’s obesity rate is one of the lowest and the US is the highest among the OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development) countries.