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Article Title

Simultaneous gas chromatography analysis of preservatives in Chinese traditional meat products collected from Ilan County

Abstract

To assay the hygienic safety data of traditional Chinese meat products, a total of 61 samples including cured duck meat (26), cured pork meat (19) and cured pork liver (14) were collected from conventional markets and supermarkets in Ilan County, Taiwan. They were simultaneously analyzed for 10 preservatives by gas chromatography with non-polar DB-1 Megabore column and flame ionization detector. Only the legal preservatives sorbic acid and benzoic acid were found, while illegal preservatives in meat products, including dehydroacetic acid and 7 esters of ρ-hydroxybenzoic acid, were not. The ratio of sample detected to contain sorbic acid and benzoic acid was 54.0% and 8.1%, respectively, of the total samples. The level of sorbic acid and benzoic acid in these samples ranged from <10 to 2,130 ppm and <10 to 933 ppm, respectively. One sample of cured pork meat contained sorbic acid at more than 2,000 ppm, the allowable limit. All the other samples were less than this allowable limit. The level of sorbic acid and benzoic acid detected in samples collected from conventional markets was less than that from supermarkets. Incorrect labeling of food products was more common in traditional markets than in supermarkets. Preservatives were not misused in the traditional cured meats, but the labeling was a problem.

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