University College Cork, Ireland

  • Organisational form: Governmental
  • Focus on: Food
  • Major activities  Education, Research



Maurice O'Sullivan

Joe Kerry

School of Food and Nutritional Sciences,
University College Cork,
Tel: 00353 (0)21 490 3544


Located at University College Cork, the School of Food and Nutritional Sciences is Ireland's principle centre for food science education and research.  We are a teaching and research based group working in the areas of; the sensory quality of food, traditional foods, food choice and food acceptance by consumers, sensory food packaging affects and shelf life.


Food science undergraduate students are taught the principles and methodologies of sensory evaluation and the importance of sensory properties in food choice as well as sensory evaluation in quality control. Postgraduate students may also engage in research projects in sensory science.

Sensory science research at University College Cork focuses on:

  • Providing state of the art sensory methods and to incorporate the most current understanding in to its undergraduate and postgraduate teaching programs.
  • Applied solutions to assist the food industry in addressing its commercial problems and challenges.
  • Sensory testing, in new product development, ingredient substitution, devising appropriate packaging and comparing foods to other competitor products and shelf life evaluation.
  • Utilising multivariate data analysis to evaluate the sensory results of trained panels and consumers.  
  • Working with food and beverage companies to help them understand the sensory quality of food, food choice and food acceptance by consumers.
  • Working with all food types, including; beverages, meats, fish, shellfish, dairy, confectionary, bread, soups, convenience foods, snack foods and fresh produce.  


In our research with sensory panels we use a variety of techniques, which include difference testing, descriptive analysis, and consumer testing. The panellists conduct their work in computer-equipped sensory laboratories. All sensory work is carried out in the sensory laboratory at UCC, which fulfils requirements according to the international standards (ASTM, 1986; ISO, 1988).

The group provides applied solutions to assist the food industry in addressing its commercial problems and challenges. This is performed by collaborative projects, industry sponsored research, dissemination of research information through literature and workshops as well as consultancy.
Please check our website for further information