AROMA & FLAVOUR COMPOUNDS FOUND IN STRAWBERRIES
Furaneol is known as 'Strawberry furanone' to those in the business of using a sub-set of substances, some natural others synthetically produced, for flavouring and odour components of confectionery and perfumes. It smells sweetly of strawberries, as do the three compounds depicted immediately below. It is found naturally in not only Strawberries but also in
Pineapple, Buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum) and
Tomato. Furaneol is also used in candy floss and instant coffee (and in the latter instance for what reason is beyond your Authors comprehension). Chemically, Furanoeol is 2,5-Dimethyl-4-Hydroxy-Furanone or DHF.
The Methoxy-derivative of Furaneol (aka its methyl ether), is shown aside it and also occurs naturally in strawberries and is also used in flavouring in which circles it is known as 'Strawberry Furanone Methyl Ether' or 'Mesifurane'. It is used in conjunction with other chemicals to simulate the odour and taste of not only strawberry but also of Raspberry,
Grape. Chemically, Furanoeol is 2,5-Dimethyl-4-Methoxy-Furanone or DMF.
These three compounds in particular contribute most to the flavour and aroma of strawberries. They are esters of
Butyric Acid. Esters are renown for their contribution to the taste and smell of many different fruits. These three smell of strawberry, but there are many other differing esters which resemble the aroma of many other fruits, for the fruits do indeed contain them.
Methyl Butyrate (aka Methyl Butanoate and Butyric Acid Methyl Ester) is a colourless liquid with a fruity aroma. It is especially abundant in
Pineapple and indeed smalls of pineapple (or of some apples) and is used in the flavouring industry.
Ethyl Butyrate (aka Ethyl Butanoate and Butyric Acid Ethyl Ester) is another colourless liquid with a similar fruity aroma to that of Methyl Butyrate, but this time more like that of oranges. It is used to flavour orange or cordials and drinks, but also those of Pineapple, Cherry, Mango, Guava, Peach, Apricot, Fig and Plum. Like Methyl Butyrate it is synthesized artificially for such use rather than harvested from pineapples.
Ethyl IsoButyrate (aka Ethyl Methyl Propionate) is an isomer of Ethyl Butyrate is another clear liquid with a sweet or etherial and fruity odour smelling citrusy of Cherry or Strawberry with overtones of pungency, alcohol, rum and fusel oil (or so the fragrance industry say)! All three are present in Strawberries.
Nerolidol aka Peruviol is a sesquiterpenoid found in the Neroli,
Jasmine (Jasminum officinale),
Tea Tree, Hemp and
Lemon Grass plants as well as in Strawberries. It has a woody aroma and is used as a flavouring to imitate tea and peach flavours, but also raspberry and other fruits and in perfumes. It has two isomers, the cis- and trans- isomers; shown above is the linear trans-isomer.
ARTIFICIAL AROMA / FLAVOUR
Chemically this is Ethyl-3-methyl-3-phenyl-oxirane-2-carboxylate. It is a synthetic substance widely used in the confectionery, sweets and the ice-cream industry as strawberry flavouring, and also in cosmetics. They call it 'Strawberry aledehyde' although this chemical in not an aldehyde, it is an ester with an
epoxide moiety (the triangle with the oxygen molecule). Note the similarity to Ethyl Butyrate depicted above, but this molecule also has a phenyl group attached. It both smells and tastes similar to Strawberries, but still lacks something. It is colourless to pale yellow, not reddish. To simulate strawberry colouring another chemical has to be added.
MORE AROMA COMPOUNDS FOUND IN STRAWBERRY(but these do not smell or taste strawberry-like)
Methyl Anthranilate (aka Methyl-2-AminoBenzoate) is a pale yellow liquid with a light-blue fluorescence under UV light and in the bulk has a fruity aroma of grapes. It repells birds and is used to protect crops such as sunflowers and fruit. It is used in perfumery and as a flavouring in some drinks, sweets, chewing gum, pharmaceuticals and nicotine products. It occurs naturally in some Grapes, and in
Bergamot Orange (Citrus bergamia) [as used in Earl Grey Tea], Black Locust (Robinia pseudoacacia),
Jasmine (Jasminum officinale),
Bitter Orange Citrus aurantium,
Oranges, Rue (Ruta graveolens), Strawberries and
Wisteria amongst others.
Diacetyl (aka Butane-2,3-Dione) is a yellowish brown liquid diketone with a buttery taste (it is found in butter) and is a by-product of the fermentation process. It is thus found in alcoholic beverages such as beer and wine where it imparts a slippery finish to the beer. In higher concentrations it imparts a buttery or butterscotch taste when it becomes an un-wanted product in beer. Diacetyl is used to impart a buttery taste in artificial butters, but in much higher concentrations it should be avoided. When Heated the inhaled vapours of it are injurious to the health and well-being of the lungs; it causes Bronchiolitis obliterans and is an occupational health issue for Popcorn factory workers. For this reason pop-corn should not be heated in a microwave oven. It is used as a component of the liquid and the vapours emitted by sweet-flavoured electronic cigarettes where the vapours can cause similar symptoms in the inhaling 'smoker'.
Eugenol (aka Oil of Cloves) is present in
Cloves and indeed smells of cloves. Cloves are the dried remains of the picked flowers of a non-native Indonesian tree called Syzygium aromaticum which is in the Myrtaceae family. Present also in
Cinnamon (variously Cinnamomum verumis),
Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans),
Sweet Basil (Ocimum basilicum), the roots of Wood Avens (Geum urbanum) and Bay leaves found on the Bay Laurel (Laurus nobilis). At lower concentrations it is also found in Strawberries. It is a hepatotoxic
phenylpropanoid oily liquid used in perfumes, flavourings, local anaesthetics (chewed cloves numb toothache). It can cause an allergic reaction in some people.
Linalool is a terpene alcohol with a floral slightly spicy smell found in many plants including the peel of citrus fruits and especially in
Lavender and used as a scent in perfumery, soap and toiletries, and as an insecticide for fleas and cockroaches. It is a small component of Strawberries but is also found in many flowering plants particularly spice plants, such as
Coriander (Coriandrum sativum), Bay Laurel (Laurus nobilis),
Sweet Basil (Ocimum basilicum) etc. It is also a component of Hops (Humulus lupus), Hemp (Cannabis sativa) and Mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris).
Linalool has two enantiomorphic forms (stereoismers) and unusually both forms are found in nature. The two enantiomorphs smell differently; the (R)- form lavender like and woody with a very low odour threshold(0.8ppb) and the (S)- form which is floral, sweet and smells of the tree
Bitter Orange (Citrus aurantium ssp. amara) and has a much higher odour threshold (7.4ppb). Linalool is used as a scent in hygeine and cleaning products such as soap, shampoos, detergents and disinfectants and as an insecticide for fleas and cockroaches.