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Career Profile of a Flavor Chemist

Job Descriptions December 6, 2012

Flavor chemists are responsible for the creation of new flavors, and enhancement of natural ones; they accomplish these goals by thinking creatively, as well as the use of multiple scientific applications. Firms that want to add flavors to their products utilize the services of flavor chemists who work in flavor institution to manufacture their products.

Wage Potential of a Flavor Chemist

According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), income data relating to flavor chemists cannot be published in the absence of reliable sources for the information (source: www.bls.gov). As of August 2011, food chemists – including flavor chemists – in the 10th to 90th percentile earned an average annual salary ranging from $29,429-$83,234 (source: Payscale.com). As of 2009, the average annual salary of all chemists was $90,000 (source: the American Chemical Society (portal.acs.org)). Among those chemists, the lowest annual average wage earned by chemists holding a bachelor degree; they took home $66,252. Chemists holding a postsecondary degree had an average annual salary of $80,619 while those holding doctoral degrees took home $100,000.

Job Profile of a Flavor Chemist

Pet, cosmetic, pharmaceutical, beverage and food industries are the main employers of flavor chemists who are referred to as flavorists. Apart from inherent creativity, flavor chemists employ analytical and scientific tools in the creation of new flavors and boosting of natural ones.

Job responsibilities of a Flavor Chemist

An examination of the characteristics of natural flavors, carbohydrates, starches, fats and proteins, among other components, are completed by flavor chemists, in the course of their work. A flavor chemist’s job involves determination of the role for each component in a particular food or flavor and an analysis of the way additives affect that role. The flavors that they have developed retain their sharpness even after some food preparation modes such as boiling, cooking, freezing, and processing. They manipulate artificial ingredients, natural flavors, aroma chemicals, plant extracts and essential oils in the development of unique flavors.

Flavor chemists rely on their capacity to innovate flavors that are longer lasting while tasting more distinct, and smelling better than natural flavors. They work to reformulate flavors while ensuring the process will not irritate the consumers’ allergies. The creation of a natural flavor in a lab by a flavor chemist precedes the enhancement of such natural flavor. Flavor chemists accomplish this by relying on previous research performed by other flavorists who have decoded the chemical makeup of most flavors that occur in nature. As a consequence of this prior research, they are able to utilize different mathematical formulas to calculate the exact proportion of substances that need to be blended together to accomplish specific characteristics.

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