Food allergies are estimated to affect 2% of the global population. For some, it is an uncomfortable experience, for others it can be life threatening. This week, Italian researchers have published a paper in the journal Food Analytical Methods that describes a way to enhance the determination of multiple allergens in dark chocolate and biscuits.
The step involves putting the sample through solid phase extraction (SPE) before liquid chromatography–electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry analysis. The method can determine 0.1-1.3mg nut/kg and 5-15mg nut/kg in biscuits and dark chocolate respectively. The researchers also used the method to determine hidden allergens in commercially available biscuits and hope it can be used to “acertain possible discrepancies between allergen content and food allergen labelling.”