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Odour Fact Cat

As I write this blog, I’m now beginning my fourth week of lockdown. As I’m sure you’re all painfully aware, that’s a long time to be staring at the same walls (and family members!). So, in search of something a bit ‘different’, today’s blog is somewhat more lighthearted than usual. With that in mind, may I present these 10 fascinating odour detection facts!

When I say ‘facts’, you may realise quite quickly that while I have indeed included some facts (some more fascinating than others), there are also some tongue in cheek red herrings in there. If you’re feeling inventive or, like me, in need of a change, perhaps you could use this trivia as the basis for a digital ‘pub quiz’. Not a bad way to catch up with any nearest and dearest you’re missing. Plus, I’ll bet you’ll be fairly unique in hosting an ‘odour quiz’. Just a thought…



Smell affects tasteSensitive cells in your nose detect different smells, and also help you tell the difference between flavours. So, without smell you wouldn’t be able to taste much either! Loss of smell is called ‘anosmia’.

If you’re affected by anosmia or would like to learn more, you might like to take a look at Fifth Sense. They’re the charity for people affected by smell and taste related disorders.


Humans get used to smells very quickly and stop noticing themHumans have a surprisingly high tolerance to odour, which means you’ll probably stop noticing a new smell really quickly. If you get on a plane (we can dream), you may be uncomfortably aware of the smell of everyone around you. By the time you get off, you won’t notice it! Same goes in a coffee shop or bakery. We’ve written about this before and how it can affect odour complaints – read more here.


Women have a better sense of smell than menWhen it comes to odour detection, the ‘fairer sex’ are far superior. Women have a much better sense of smell than men. Enough said on that one.


Rabbits and dogs have millions of odour detecting cellsAnimals (especially dogs) have a much better sense of smell than humans. As humans, we have around five to six million odour detecting cells. Rabbits have around 100 million, while dogs have an incredible 220 or so odour detecting cells.

In fact, dogs are so good at sniffing out scents that it’s even a job. Police dogs are often responsible for finding drugs, weapons and even bodies. Not only that, but medical dogs are now starting to sniff out diseases such as cancer, malaria, strokes and Parkinson’s.


Toddlers move quickly when chocolate is involved!Toddlers move faster than the speed of light when the aroma of chocolate is present. Fact.


Your sense of smell shuts down when you’re asleep. So, make sure you check those smoke alarms are working! Plus, take a moment each day to really savour the aroma of that essential morning coffee!


Luckily for astronauts, odour detection isn't possible through without atmosphere! Space is pretty smelly - Uranus smells of rotten eggs!Uranus smells like rotten eggs, thanks to its abundance of Hydrogen Sulfide. I think you’ll find that’s a pretty good home-schooling fact, for those of you currently multi-tasking. For bonus points, you could also point out that astronauts obviously can’t attempt to smell anything in space (due to the lack of atmosphere!).


Scents are used in commerce to increase customer spendSome shops use smells to make you spend more in store. They pump out certain aromas at specific points in the store to make you hungry, which makes you buy more. For example, you may smell the scent of freshly baked bread in the bakery aisle, chocolate in the confectionery aisle or sizzling steak in the meat aisle.


Smells can trigger emotions aThe smell of crayons can evoke powerful childhood memoriesnd memories. If you catch a whiff of cut grass for example, it may take you back to childhood summer holidays. One of the most powerful smells for triggering childhood memories is crayons. Which smells take you back?


Your power of odour detection declines with ageThe sense of smell is linked to age! At around age 18-19, your sniffing powers are at their peak. From there, your sensitivity to smell will gradually decline as you get older.


We hope you’ve enjoyed this little soiree into the fascinating world of odours! If you need help with odour detection, monitoring or management, give us a call on 01525 860222 or click on the button below. We’re happy to help. You can also stay up to date with the Silsoe Odours team on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.

One Response

  1. Very good ! Hope all is well at Silsoe !
    keep safe



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