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Acrylamide content in French fries prepared in food service establishments

Mesias, Marta, Delgado-Andrade, Cristina, Holgado, Francisca, Morales, Francisco J.
Lebensmittel-Wissenschaft + [i.e. und] Technologie 2019 v.100 pp. 83-91
European Union, French fries, acrylamides, chemometrics, color, cost effectiveness, dinner, food service, frying, frying oil, lunch, polar compounds, potatoes, reducing sugars, sugar content, water content
Since the regulation on the acrylamide reduction in foods, the food business operators have implemented mitigation strategies for reduction of acrylamide content in French fries. Thirty food service establishments from ten of the most relevant trademark food restaurants were recruited. Par-fried frozen potato, fried potato, and frying oil were collected at two different moments of the day (lunch/dinner) for two different days. Acrylamide, reducing sugar content, moisture, colour, and polar compounds were measured. Acrylamide content (<20–1068 μg/kg) and the mean (303 μg/kg) were in line with the EFSA estimations for French fries. 13.5% of the samples reported acrylamide above 500 μg/kg (benchmark level settled for the EU Regulation 2158/2017). Regardless frying conditions applied and operational procedures, the reducing sugar content (<0.2–4.89 g/kg) in the unprocessed potato, the colour parameter a* (−2.56–5.21), and the moisture content (29.26–65.93%) of the French fries correlated significantly to acrylamide. The colour parameter a* is useful to set up chemometric tools to provide rapid and cost-effective control for acrylamide content. Increasing the level of automatization will reduce the acrylamide variability among food service establishments and will minimize the impact of inadequate decisions of the food handler.