NYU Steinhardt News

A New Vision for the Science of Human Flavor Perception

Renowned Yale neuroscientist Gordon M. Shepherd wrote an event abstract titled "A New Vision for the Science of Human Flavor Perception" for the publication "Frontiers." Shepherd describes the "Science of Human Flavor Perception" conference, which was hosted by NYU Steinhardt's Nutrition and Food Studies Department in tandem with NYU School of Dentistry in May 2014. Outlining the interdisciplinarian nature of the field of food studies, Shepherd describes the combined body of research as "neurograstronomy," or, "a new vision for the science of human flavor perception."

The conference had attendees and speakers with expertise ranging from neurology to expertise in flavor preferences to culinary arts and public health.  The conference heard from our own Marion Nestle and Lisa Sasson, as well as Michael Moss, Richard Wrangham, Daniel Lieberman, Stuart Firestein, Gary Beauchamp, Anthony Sclafani, Ivan De Araujo, Julie Mennella, Dana Small, and more.

Shepherd describes the conference's three main principles as being first, "Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution," second, that "Flavor is not in the food; it is created by the brain," and third, as the common goal of "applying flavor science to achieve better nutrition and public health."

For Shepherd's complete account, read his article in "Frontiers" here: http://www.frontiersin.org/10.3389/conf.fnint.2015.03.00010/event_abstract