How to measure and analyse the texture of food, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals and adhesives.

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Measure Cutting Force

Measurement of toughness/cutting force and related properties using the TA.XTplus Texture AnalyserBITING/CUTTING FORCE gives an indication of the firmness/hardness of a product.  

Bearing in mind that if a row of top front teeth were pulled from a curve into a straight line they would represent a 'knife edge', using a knife blade gives a close representation of the biting or cutting action.

TOUGHNESS – whilst Hardness/Firmness is usually the textural property possessed by most products, the word 'toughness' or ‘chewiness’ may be substituted for a textural property more associated with the product.  

Toughness (or ‘chewiness’) is the textural property possessed by meat, fish and poultry products, but a term also used for baked products such as tortillas, pancakes or pizzas. The toughness is often taken as the total positive area under the curve. 

Measurement of toughness/cutting force and related properties using the TA.XTplus Texture Analyser
This measurement records the total 'work' involved in performing this test. It therefore follows that a higher area value indicates a higher amount of energy involved in performing the test and the sample is recorded as tougher to test.

Look at Hardness as the effort you use to push your shopping trolley round the supermarket - the effort required to push it being dependent on the weight of shopping being added. The more shopping you put in, the harder it is to push - i.e. the greater force you have to apply. The toughness or work is the accumulated effort of the whole journey around the supermarket from empty trolley to the checkout! 

The descriptions Tenderness and Toughness are not absolute. They have to be defined by agreement between the parties using them. Tenderness maybe the inverse of toughness as softness is the inverse of hardness.

Typical Methods & Fixtures for Biting Force/Cutting Force/Toughness/Chewiness Measurement in action:

Typical physical properties that can be obtained from a texture analysis graph:  
Force to actuate and/or deliver a product, distance at which actuation occurs during compression.

A wide range of attachments is available for measuring texture analysis properties.  

Typical Texture Analyser graph with annotated properties
Typical Texture Analyser graph
with annotated properties
The above are only typical examples of biting force/cutting force/toughness/chewiness measurement

We can of course design and manufacture probes or fixtures for the TA.XTplus texture analyser that are bespoke to your sample and its specific measurement.

Once your measurement is performed our expertise in its graphical interpretation is unparalleled – no-one understands texture analysis like we do. Not only can we develop the most suitable and accurate method for the testing of your sample but we can prepare analysis procedures that obtain the desired parameters from your curve and drop them into a spreadsheet or report designed around your requirements.

For more information on how to measure texture, please visit the Texture Analysis Properties section on our website.

To discuss your specific test requirements click here...

Watch our video about texture analysis Replicating Consumer Preferences
 Texture Analysis applications

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