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Drawback Tutorial

MNBP Protocol for Organoleptic Analysis

As a result of the extensive guidelines for nonbeverage product formulation, organoleptic analysis to determine unfitness for beverage purposes should be rare. When possible, please cite a specific guideline that makes the nonbeverage product unfit for beverage purpose and keep in mind that organoleptic analysis are very subjective. When used, it is for the purpose of determining whether the average person would mistake the product for an alcoholic beverage. Unlike tasting protocols for finished products, where the detection of slight variations or subtleties in flavor might be important, the determination of fitness for beverage purposes requires the panelist to consider if the product has flavor qualities that would prevent the average person from mistaking it for an alcoholic beverage.

Tasting protocol:  Performed under ambient conditions

  1. Samples that contain more than 15% alcohol by volume are diluted to that level with tap water before taste paneling.  Dilution is based on the upper end of the range for alcohol content in item 10 on form TTB F 5154.1.
  2. Samples that contain 15% alcohol by volume or less are tasted without dilution.
  3. Six or more panelists are required for organoleptic analysis.
  4. Two-thirds of the panelists must agree that the sample is unfit for beverage purposes.
  5. Results of the taste panel are to be recorded in box 13 of form TTB F 5154.1 with the following statement:

“This product was found to be unfit for beverage purposes.  It was subjected to organoleptic analysis by a taste panel of ____ panelists, ____ of whom agreed on the determination.”

For example: “This product was found to be unfit for beverage purposes. It was subjected to organoleptic analysis by a taste panel of six (6) panelists, four (4) of whom agreed on the determination.”

Page last reviewed/updated: 10/25/2017