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Straightforward analytical method to determine opium alkaloids in poppy seeds and bakery products

López, Patricia, Pereboom-de Fauw, Diana P.K.H., Mulder, Patrick P.J., Spanjer, Martien, de Stoppelaar, Joyce, Mol, Hans G.J., de Nijs, Monique
Food chemistry 2018 v.242 pp. 443-450
acetonitrile, analytical methods, baked goods, codeine, formic acid, laws and regulations, morphine, pH, papaverine, seeds, thebaine, Germany, Netherlands
A straightforward method to determine the content of six opium alkaloids (morphine, codeine, thebaine, noscapine, papaverine and narceine) in poppy seeds and bakery products was developed and validated down to a limit of quantification (LOQ) of 0.1mg/kg. The method was based on extraction with acetonitrile/water/formic acid, ten-fold dilution and analysis by LC-MS/MS using a pH 10 carbonate buffer.The method was applied for the analysis of 41 samples collected in 2015 in the Netherlands and Germany. All samples contained morphine ranging from 0.2 to 240mg/kg. The levels of codeine and thebaine ranged from below LOQ to 348mg/kg and from below LOQ to 106mg/kg, respectively. Sixty percent of the samples exceeded the guidance reference value of 4mg/kg of morphine set by BfR in Germany, whereas 25% of the samples did not comply with the limits set for morphine, codeine, thebaine and noscapine by Hungarian legislation.