FLORIDA AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATIONS
Dairy Science Mimeo Report DY69-7
May 23, 1969
EXAMINATION OF FROZEN DESSERTS FOR QUALITY
E. L. Fouts1
A processor of frozen desserts, ice cream, ice milk, sherbets, novelties
anc special items should have some standard procedure for examining his
products regularly to make certain that his product composition, quality
and uniformity are what he wants and expects them to be.
Certain dairy products, particularly creamery butter and American cheese
are purchased in the agricultural commodity market on a graded basis. A
score card which includes all of the items which contribute to the quality
of these two products is used and a product must come up a score to be
accorded a certain grade. The value of the product depends on the grade
its score entitles it to. Ice cream and frozen desserts are not sold in
the same manner. They are sold almost entirely to a retail outlet or
direct to the consumer. The price charged is not dependent on score or
grade the product receives. The price is governed by the demand and com-
petition on any particularly market.
It therefore behoves a manufacturer who is interested in maintaining a
standard quality product to develop some system of his own to accomplish
the purpose. It is best for the plant quality control supervisor or the
owner to do this or to have it done by someone outside of the firm. The
reason for this is evident, you must have an impartial appraisal of your
products with no leaway for reasons why the product today or any other
day may not be quite up to standard. It either is or it isn't. Reasons
why are worth knowing so corrections can be made but they should not ex-
cuse any product for being substandard. This is why a qualified person,
completely unbiased from outside the organization will usually give a
better product quality appraisal than one from the inside.
There is a standard score card for ice cream but usually it is not used
for the purpose mentioned. The following factors are considered
when using this standard score card.
Body & Texture 30
Melting quality 5
Color and package 5
This score card is used primarily in judging contests, where the ability
of judges is being compared with other judges, as in the case in the
students judging contest held annually in connection with the meetings of
the Dairy and Food Industries Association, Inc. and other national dairy
rDairy Technologist, Department of Dairy Science
A modified scoring plan that the writer uses with some satisfaction in-
cludes only flavor, body and texture and color. The flavor is the main
factor to be considered and the following flavor score and market grade
relationship is used, with 45 being a perfect score.
40 & above Excellent
37-39 1/2 Good
34-36 1/2 Fair
25-33 1/2 Poor
The items in addition to flavor, including body and texture and color
enter into the assignment of a market grade but are not scored numerically.
In other words, the flavor score determines the market grade unless there
is a defect in body, texture or color.
If such should be the case, a product scoring 38 on flavor, grading "good'
could have a slight defect in one of the other two items and still retain
a market grade of good. Conversely, if a flavor score of 37 (good) had
been given to a product and any other defect, even though slight, was
noted it would automatically be reduced to the next lower grade.
Now, how does a person determine the extent and type of off-flavors that
are permitted'iunder the various classifications. A course in judging
ice cream would be required to do this properly but the following
will give some idea of the type and degree of off-flavors that can be
present within certain market grades.
Excellent ice cream scores 40 or more and has no defects in flavor.
Good ice cream may lack fine flavor, lack flavor, lack freshness, have a
slight cooked flavor, lack sweetness or have other minor defects.
Fair ice cream may have the following defects: feedy, unnatural flavoring,
old ingredients, metallic, oxidized or storage.
Poor ice cream may have the following defects: neutralizer, unclean,
rancid, metallic, high acid, or salty.
This gives some idea about the types of defects that cause a product to
fall into certain classifications. There are several degrees of the
defects and there are a variety of other defects too numerous to mention.
Following is a brief discussion of the body and texture qualities.
Excellent means that the product is firm, smooth and velvety.
Good means that the product is slightly heavy, slightly coarse or crumbly.
Fair means that the product is coarse, crumbly, heavy, fluffy or weak.
Poor means that the product is buttery, icy, lumpy, or sandy.
While the body is not actually scored numerically under this plan, any
defects detract from the quality of the product and may actually lower
the market grade.
Color should be suggestive of the flavor of the product and any variation
from this will detract from the quality of the product and if severe, may
actually lower the market grade.
Ice cream bars, cups and other novelties should be included in these
observations. They account for considerable of the sales and their quality
should be maintained, as should all other of your products. The substance
of this article is to strongly recommend that each ice cream processor
use some plan to check his products regularly for uniformity and quality.
Some practice by an interested person, even if untrained, will soon develop
a skill that will be useful in judging ice cream quality.
The chemical and bacteriological analysis of each mix and package weights
on finished products complete the information necessary to give a total
evaluation of product quality.
To complement the information gained by looking at your own product
regularly, it is strongly recommended that samples of competitive products
on your market be picked up at convenient intervals. These products
should be scored in the same impartial manner thus giving you a comparison
of your ice cream products with those offered by your competitors.
Naturally, you won't have time or be able, nor would it be advisable to
try to pick up all flavors of all competitors products. Just take a
collection of not more than 6 or 8 products. Usually the vanilla,
chocolate and strawberry products are pretty good indicators of the
general quality of products offered by a manufacturer.
If you will adopt some such plan as has been suggested, you will find
much value in knowing the quality of your products at all times. If
defects occur you will know it quickly and be able to make necessary