In an article published recently in the Asia & Middle East Food Trade Journal, Beta Analytic described the use of Carbon-14 analysis as a tool to identify economically motivated adulteration in natural ingredients.
The presence of carbon-14 in organic materials allows carbon-14 analysis to calculate the percentage of naturally sourced versus petrochemical-derived ingredients present in an ingredient or product. The measurement is performed in accordance with ASTM-D6866 standard using an Accelerator Mass Spectrometer (AMS).
Results are measured as a percentage, ranging from 0-100% depending on the quantity of biomass in the product. An ingredient completely sourced from biomass will have 100% biobased content whereas a product that is completely sourced from petrochemical-derived ingredients will yield a result of 0%. A product with 50% biobased content represents a mixture of both naturally sourced and fossil-derived ingredients.
Due to the increase in demand for natural products in the market, validating natural ingredients claims is vital for companies. Carbon-14 analysis allows manufacturers, suppliers and distributors to accurately prove the naturality of their product ingredients and fulfill customer expectations.
A study conducted by Beta Analytic was designed to identify the existence of adulterants in five garlic oil samples, four of which were labelled as “100% pure garlic essential oil” and one artificial garlic oil.
Through the use of Carbon-14 analysis, the results demonstrated that only one of the four products labelled as “100% pure garlic oil” supported the natural label claim, despite all five samples having passed a GC-MS chemical composition test for garlic oil.
Carbon-14 analysis is an accurate method for suppliers and distributors to authenticate ingredients’ naturality, as this testing accurately identifies the presence of petrochemical-derived adulterants by determining what percentage of an ingredient was sourced from biomass.
For more details, please read Beta Analytic’s article Authenticating natural-sourced food ingredients with Carbon-14 analysis published in Asia & Middle East Food Trade Journal.
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