Juliette Behra


As a curious and gourmand fellow, I am very much interested in understanding how food products are formulated and how we interact with them (consumer behaviour, sensory perception, food in-mouth behaviour). I thus started my studies with chemistry to get some fundamental knowledge before moving towards food science. My PhD project is now related to the formulation of complex products.

Academic background:

  • Oct. 2013: Degree of Engineer in Chemistry, INP-ENSIACET (Toulouse, France)
  • 2012-2013: Exchange student, AgroParisTech (Paris, France), Food product design and development specialization
  • 2010-2013: Engineer student, INP-ENSIACET (Toulouse, France), Chemistry
  • 2007-2010: Undergraduate student, INP-CPP (Toulouse, France), Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Biology

Work experiences (including past research experiences):

  • March - Sept. 2014: Beverage Junior Sensory Project Manager, Givaudan (Naarden, The Netherlands)

My main tasks were to manage sensory analysis studies including methodology choice and set-up, data analysis and reporting (written and/or oral), help the panel leader and her assistant to organize the sessions with the panel and support an internship on the creation and the development of a new sensory methodology.

  • Nov. 2013 - March. 2014: Private teacher (Toulouse, France)

I supported 13 to 18 y.o. purpils in mathematics, physics, chemistry and German.

  • Apr. - Sept. 2013: Research intern, Nestlé Research Centre (Lausanne, Switzerland)

My project was about the in-mouth behaviour of emulsions containing different biopolymers/emulsifiers. After having formulated my emulsions, I characterised them with rheological and static light scattering measurements. I then characterised the emulsion in-mouth behaviour with in vivo (home-made instrument), in vitro (visual observations, static light scattering and turbidity measurements) and sensory analyses (sorting, descriptive analysis).

  • Sept. 2012 - Feb. 2013: MEng student, Syndicat des Eaux d’Ile-de-France (SEDIF) & Laboratoire de Perception Sensorielle et Sensométrie (LaPSS) (Paris, France)

My MEng project was about the gustative quality of water in Paris area. I proposed a few solutions to evaluate the gustative quality of water by consumers.

  • July - Sept. 2012: Research Intern, Agri-Business and Chain Management & Food Technology and Engineering laboratories Ghent University (Ghent, Belgium)

My project was about the influence of particle size on chocolate texture. I produced the chocolate samples and characterised them with static light scattering, Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC), and hardness measurements. I also conducted sensory analyses (training of an expert panel, design and application of discrimination tests and descriptive analyses) as well as a hedonic study with consumers.

Poster and oral communications:

  • Poster communication. J.S. Behra, J. Mattsson, O.J. Cayre, T.N. Hunter. Understanding Sodium Carboxymethyl Cellulose (Na CMC) Behaviour For Formulating Complex Food Products. Delivery of Functionality in Complex Food Systems: Physically-Inspired Approaches from the Nanoscale to the Microscale. Paris (France). July 2015.
  • Poster communication. J.S. Behra, J. Mattsson, O.J. Cayre, T.N. Hunter. Formulating Complex Products Containing Sodium Carboxymethyl Cellulose (Na CMC). Arrested Gels: Dynamics, Structure and Applications. Cambridge (UK). March 2015.
  • Poster communication. C. Loret, J.S. Behra, D.Z. Gunes, T.J. Wooster. Emulsion-Saliva Interactions Depending On Protein Conformation. Food Structure and Functionality Forum Symposium. Amsterdam (The Netherlands). March-April 2014.
  • Oral communication. S. De Pelsmaeker, J.S. Behra, J. Schouteten, X. Gellynck. Difference in threshold detection of graininess in chocolate: machine versus vs human. Food Structure and Functionality Forum Symposium. Amsterdam (The Netherlands). March-April 2014.
  • Poster communication. J.S. Behra, J.M. Sieffermann. Which Consumer Methodologies for Assessing Organoleptic Tap Water Quality? 10th Pangborn Sensory Analysis Symposium. Rio de Janeiro (Brazil). August 2013.

Research interests

My PhD project is about the structure-property relationships of Sodium Carboxymethyl Cellulose (Na CMC) in pure water and formulated solutions. Na CMC is widely used in the industry, especially in the formulation of complex products such as pharmaceutical, food and home and personal care products. The formulation of these products includes many components like salts, sugars or sugar alcohols, surfactants and flavour oils. The objective of the project is to increase the knowledge about the fundamental physics controlling the behaviour of Na CMC in such products. This will also provide insights for the formulation of complex products. Two main techniques are involved in the characterisation of the behaviour of Na CMC: rheology and light scattering.

This project is co-funded by the University of Leeds through the University of leeds 110 Anniversary Postgraduate Research Scholarship Scheme and by P&G.


  • Engineer in Chemistry (INP-ENSIACET, Toulouse, France, October 2013)

Research groups and institutes

  • Complex Systems and Processes