AbstractThe drinking water supply in the Barcelona region has recently experienced a radical change because three new facilities with membrane technology have come into service (i.e. reverse osmosis and electrodialysis reversal in the Llobregat river and a sea water reverse osmosis desalination plant. The aim of the study was to predict the reaction of consumers to changes when blends between desalinated and conventionally treated sources were supplied. Seven blended samples of membrane and conventionally treated waters and three unblended water samples were assessed using ranking, scoring and triangle tests. Trained and untrained panels were used for taste assessment. The number of available tasters for each session was 13–14 trained tasters and between 22 and 32 volunteers. Therefore, the total number of tasters ranged between 36 and 46. Ranking and scoring results from both panels were similar (i.e. no significant difference in an independent t-Test), even though the trained panel displayed a better se...

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