Comparative evaluation of methods for the detection of 2-alkylcyclobutanones as indicators for irradiation treatment of cashew nuts and nutmeg.

Breidbach A, Ulberth F.
52-8 pages
Volume Jun 15;201
Irradiation of food products and ingredients must be indicated by proper labeling. This study evaluated the appropriateness of the European Standard EN 1785:2003 for the detection of 2-alkylcyclobutanones, which are radiolysis products of fatty acids, in cashew nuts and nutmeg and confirmed its suitability to detect irradiation of cashew nut samples at average absorbed doses of 1kGy and above. An alternative method was developed, which is based on matrix solid phase dispersion and subsequent separation and detection of oxime derivatives of 2-alkylcyclobutanones by high performance-high resolution mass spectrometry. It is more rapid, less resource consuming, and more sensitive than EN 1785:2003. This method allowed detection of 2-alkylcyclobutanones in cashew nuts irradiated at 100 Gray and in nutmeg irradiated at 400 Gray. None of the 26 cashew nut and 14 nutmeg samples purchased in different EU Member States contained traces of 2-alkylcyclobutanones.