At the University of Adelaide, Anna tests what consumers do and don't like about food and drink products. She works closely with local producers and her work helps drive innovation and exports, taking South Australia's premium produce to the world.
I studied food science and nutrition at Griffith University in Queensland, completed my Honours degree and have almost finished my PhD.
I loved home economics at high school and originally wanted to get into dietetics. But jobs were few and far between and it was hard to get a break.
In my Honours research I investigated the sensory and chemical characteristics of cocoa products of different origins. It was fascinating – and it drove my desire to work in the field of sensory science.
I did that research at the Department of Primary Industries in Queensland and that’s where I developed a passion for supporting Australian producers.
I love understanding what drives people to make certain food and beverage choices. I enjoy seeing their reactions to different elements of a product – appearance, colour, aroma, flavour, texture – and how different peoples’ responses vary.
My smartest move was coming to Adelaide to do my PhD. That led to my job at SARDI (a division of PIRSA) and now the University of Adelaide
I'm seeing new food and drink products before anyone else. And I'm getting to try new and innovative products.
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The growing interest in, and adoption of, consumer testing by producers is leading to the development of premium products that satisfy domestic consumers and are also internationally competitive.
Quote: “Sensory research isn’t glamorous. You need to be willing to get your hands dirty – like covered in potato dust or stained purple with wine.”