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A Novel Method for the Determination of Synthetic Colors in Ice Cream Samples

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A simple method has been developed for the extraction, separation, and determination of synthetic colors in ice cream samples. The process involves the breakdown of emulsion by neutral detergents (Triton X-100 and Tween 20) followed by extraction with petroleum ether for removal of fat. The aqueous colored solution obtained is treated with 5% acetic acid, and the uptake of color is carried out by a wool-dyeing technique. The color is eluted from the wool with 5% ammonia solution, the solution is evaporated to dryness, and the residue is dissolved in 60% ethanol for paper chromatography using trisodium citrate–ammonia–water (2 + 5 + 95, w/v/v) as the mobile phase. The colored spots from the paper chromatogram are cut and eluted with 60% ethanol, and the absorbance is measured at the respective λ maximum corresponding to the Rf value of the appropriate standard. The recoveries of 6 colors, including sunset yellow FCF (SSYFCF), tartrazine, carmoisine, ponceau 4R, brilliant blue FCF (BBFCF), and fast green FCF from spiked samples with either detergent were found to be >90%. However, recoveries of erythrosine were 21 and 65% with Triton X-100 and Tween 20, respectively. Indigo carmine could not be recovered at all because of its fugitive property in 5% ammonia solution, which is used to strip the color from the wool. The sensitivity of the method with the use of Tween 20 is 1 ppm (1 μg/g) for the colors in spiked ice cream samples. With this method, we analyzed samples of 20 branded colored ice cream. The results showed the presence of tartrazine (8.4–43.3 ppm), SSYFCF (23.5–117.6 ppm), carmoisine (traces–53.2 ppm), erythrosine (3.5 ppm), and BBFCF (4.1 ppm) in the ice cream samples. Apart from 2 samples of tuttifruity, all of the ice cream samples showed the presence of permitted synthetic colors below the permissible level of 100 ppm established by the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act of India.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Food Toxicology Laboratory, Industrial Toxicology Research Centre, PO Box 80, Mahatma Gandhi Marg, Lucknow-226001, India.

Publication date: May 1, 2004

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of AOAC INTERNATIONAL publishes refereed papers and reviews in the fields of chemical, biological and toxicological analytical chemistry for the purpose of showcasing the most precise, accurate and sensitive methods for analysis of foods, food additives, supplements and contaminants, cosmetics, drugs, toxins, hazardous substances, pesticides, feeds, fertilizers and the environment available at that point in time. The scope of the Journal includes unpublished original research describing new analytical methods, techniques and applications; improved approaches to sampling, both in the field and the laboratory; better methods of preparing samples for analysis; collaborative studies substantiating the performance of a given method; statistical techniques for evaluating data. The Journal will also publish other articles of general interest to its audience, e.g., technical communications; cautionary notes; comments on techniques, apparatus, and reagents.
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