milk (4)


Authorities in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan are using a mobile testing laboratory to check the authenticity of milk sold in local shops. 

They have recently identified and destroyed more than 2,000 litres of milk diluted with water or adulterated with other chemicals and have closed a number of dairy shops.

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Animal origin food products, including fish and seafood, meat and poultry, milk and dairy foods, and other related products play significant roles in human nutrition. However, fraud in this food sector frequently occurs, leading to negative economic impacts on consumers and potential risks to public health and the environment. Therefore, the development of analytical techniques that can rapidly detect fraud and verify the authenticity of such products is of paramount importance.

Traditionally, a wide variety of targeted approaches, such as chemical, chromatographic, molecular, and protein-based techniques, among others, have been frequently used to identify animal species, production methods, provenance, and processing of food products. Although these conventional methods are accurate and reliable, they are destructive, time-consuming, and can only be employed at the laboratory scale. On the contrary, alternative methods based mainly on spectroscopy have emerged in recent years as invaluable tools to overcome most of the limitations associated with
traditional measurements. The number of scientific studies reporting on various authenticity issues investigated by vibrational spectroscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance, and fluorescence spectroscopy has increased substantially over the past few years, indicating the tremendous potential of these techniques in the fight against food fraud.

This manuscript reviews the state-of-the-art research advances since 2015 regarding the use of analytical methods applied to detect fraud in food products of animal origin, with particular attention paid to spectroscopic measurements coupled with chemometric analysis. The opportunities and challenges surrounding the use of spectroscopic techniques and possible future directions are also be discussed.

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 AOAC International's Food Authenticity Task Force has developed standard method performance requirements (SMPR) for targeted and non-targeted food authenticity methods. SMPR set minimum performance criteria that food authenticity testing methods for milk, honey and olive oil need to fulfil. 

Further information was provided in a recent free-of-charge webinar, which can be viewed on registration.

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Italian researchers validated a commercial low cost and density (LCD) Array (Meat 5.0 Version) based on a DNA biochip technology that simultaneously detects 24 animal species. Mixtures of the animal species covered by the kit were prepared at different concentrations and tested on raw/pasteurised, and heated meat and milk matrices. The array showed high specificity and high sensitivity, and it appeared to be robust and repeatable.

Read the abstract at: Chip Array validation for meat species

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