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Fields & Applications Food, Beverage & Agriculture, Mass Spectrometry, Gas Chromatography, Liquid Chromatography, Chemical

Chewing Over Food Analysis

What are the hot potatoes in food quality and safety?

Michele Suman: In general, we need to pay more attention to food fraud and the associated risks – issues that are strongly related to globalization of the market and economic crises. I also see a number of more specific issues.  There should be an increased focus on allergens and genetically-modified organism (GMO) issues. Regarding chemical contaminants, emerging and masked mycotoxins present a complex challenge in terms of analysis and risk assessment. We must also continue to be vigilant on the impact of veterinary drugs and pesticides; their widespread use has consequences for raw materials and finished products. Additionally, advanced industrial technologies are introducing new issues, such as those related to nanoparticles. Finally, there is the ongoing issue of food packaging materials: the absence of toxicological evaluations and harmonized/comprehensive legislation platforms suggests that risks connected with the specific migration of substances from packaging into foodstuffs will remain a major topic for the next decade.

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About the Authors

Hans-Gerd Janssen

Hans-Gerd Janssen is Science Leader of Analytical Chemistry at Unilever Research Vlaardingen, and Professor of Biomacromolecular Separations at the van’t Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences at the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Yolanda Pico

Yolanda is professor for Nutrition and Food Science and Head of the Research Group in Food and Environmental Safety (SAMA-UV) at the University of Valencia, Spain. She works in the development of new analytical methods to determine organic contaminants in food and the environment, identification of unknown compounds by LC-MS, microextraction, and other separation science.

Michele Suman

“When my mother mentioned the possibility of me becoming a chemist at primary school age, my response was, ‘No way!’” Despite his initial skepticism, Michele Suman became a chemist and then took a masters and doctorate in chemistry and materials science before eventually landing the role of Food Chemistry & Safety Research Manager at Barilla SpA. There since 2003, he has been working in an international contest on research projects within the field of food chemistry, food contact materials, sensing and MS applications for food products.

Rudolf Krska

Professor for (bio)analytics and organic trace analysis and Head of the Department for Agrobiotechnology (IFA) at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (BOKU), Vienna, Austria. He obtained his degree in chemistry at the Vienna University of Technology and is an expert in food and feed analysis by chromatographic, mass spectrometric and immunoanalytical techniques.

Michel Nielen

Michel Nielen is Principal Scientist of Wageningen Food Safety Research (WFSR) and professor of Analytical Chemistry at Wageningen University, the Netherlands. He is coordinator of the H2020 MSCA ITN project FoodSmartphone and Co-Chair of the Recent Advances in Food Analysis (RAFA) symposium series.

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