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Statistical Differentiation of Baijiu Spirits Using SPME-GC-TOFMS and ChromaTOF Sync Software

Introduction

Baijiu, a transparent distilled spirit regarded as China's national liquor, is one of the world's most consumed spirits. The manufacturing process of Baijiu is relatively complex—as with whisky, brandy and other distilled alcoholic beverages, several steps are involved, including fermentation, distillation, and aging. The diverse raw materials used, complexity of microorganisms used for fermentation, and different regional environments greatly contribute to the variety of Baijiu products and their aroma profiles. The characterization and differentiation of Baijiu samples according to their aroma-type and origin (region) can be conducted by gas chromatography and mass spectrometry (GC-MS). However, accurate analysis of these samples is challenging due to the high number and varying range of concentrations of compounds present, with detection and identification of trace level compounds being especially difficult.

Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry (TOFMS) detection improves this task due to the ability to collect full mass range, unskewed MS data with fast acquisition rates.

This application note describes the development of a headspace solid-phase microextraction (HS-SPME) method in combination with GC and LECO's Pegasus BT time-of-flight mass spectrometer (TOFMS) for the analysis of Baijiu's volatile organic components (VOCs).

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