Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Nutrition, Dietetics, and Food Sciences

Department name when degree awarded

Food Science and Technology

Committee Chair(s)

E. B. Wilcox


E. B. Wilcox


Joseph C. Street


Paul B. Larsen


Venison meat has a characteristic flavor which is acceptable if mild but some venison has a strong and objectionable flavor. The subject is of practical importance where deer is hunted as sport and for food. Each year in the State of Utah, over 180,000 hunters go in search of deer and over 130,000 animals are killed. This contributes about 10 1/2 million dollars to the economy of the state from licenses, lodging, transportation and other expenses of hunting. The problem is not only important in Utah but also in the U.S.A. and other parts of the world where venison is available and included in the diet. Little work has been done in the study of the components which give venison its characteristic flavor.

Today, flavor chemistry is relatively a new field. Kurtz (1959) defines flavor as complex sensations resulting from the stimulation of the senses of odor, taste, feel, and sometimes vision and audition. Gas-liquid chromatography is a powerful tool to a flavor chemist. The first classical paper describing both the gas-liquid partition technique and a relatively simple apparatus for resolving the aliphatic acids was published int he year 19552 by James and Martin. In 1956 the number of published papers was approximately 200. By 1960, the use of this technique had increased tremendously as evidenced by the fact that the number of publications were then about 1700. Application of this technique has resulted in a number of papers on volatile compounds in various foods. The ultimate aim of studying these volatiles is to make it possible to improve the flavor of food products. The editor of Food Technology (Stewart, 1963) has stated that flavor is a challenge to a food technologist and that he has to answer such questions as:

1. Does the volatile compound which has been identified int eh sample have sensory properties

2. If so, what is its nature?

3. What combinations of components result in the sensory properties typical of the original product from which they were derived?

Only after the studies have been made will we know the significance of these volatile compounds.

The present study is a second phase in a project on investigation of venison quality and palatability being made under a federal aid project (W-97-R0 through the Utah Department of Fish and Game. These phases include (a) the effects of field care, aging and cooking on the venison meats and (b) flavor components, their presence, distribution and factors affecting the amounts of these components.

In the previous work on item (b) above, a comparative study of water soluble flavor precursors of venison and beef was made (Reddy, 1964).

The present study deals with the nature of volatile compounds in cooked venison samples and determination of differences in venison flavor in animals of different ages, sexes, and season of kill. Evaluation of flavor was also made by a panel of judges.



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