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A screening method based on Visible-NIR spectroscopy for the identification and quantification of different adulterants in high-quality honey

Aliaño-González, Ma José, Ferreiro-González, Marta, Espada-Bellido, Estrella, Palma, Miguel, Barbero, Gerardo F.
Talanta 2019 v.203 pp. 235-241
European Union, adulterants, adulterated products, cane sugar, chemometrics, fructose, honey, models, near-infrared spectroscopy, quality control, regression analysis, rice syrup, screening, Spain
According to European Union regulations, honey is a pure product and adding to or removing from it any kind of substance is illegal. Nevertheless, its adulteration by adding inexpensive and artificial adulterants is a common practice. This paper deals with the use of visible and near-infrared spectroscopy (Vis-NIRS) combined with chemometric tools as a screening technique for the identification and quantification of different types of adulterants (inverted sugar, rice syrup, brown cane sugar and fructose syrup) added to high-quality honey (Granada Protected Designation of Origin, Spain) at different levels (5%–50%). A complete discrimination between non-adulterated and adulterated samples was achieved. A general regression model to quantify the adulteration levels was developed as well as specific models for each adulterant. The coefficients of determination were higher than 0.96 for all the models. These results demonstrate the capacity of Vis-NIRS combined with chemometric tools for honey quality control.