How is Gas Chromatography Used for Food Testing?
Apr 11 2022
Gas chromatography is an asset to the food industry, giving us a better understanding of the food we eat, its nutritional value, and its quality. Read on as we take a closer look at the ways gas chromatography is used for food testing, from detecting additives and pesticides to analysing the ingredients of food products.
Detecting harmful components
Most food manufacturers have high standards for the more harmful substances found in our food, such as additives, pesticides, and contaminants. There are extensive laws surrounding which chemicals can be used in the growth and production of food and the preservation and manufacturing of food. Some substances are allowable in specific amounts, whereas others are banned entirely.
Gas chromatography is utilised to detect harmful substances and monitor levels of permissible substances. Food manufacturers may also run their ingredients through the chromatography column to find out the exact breakdown of the products they intend to use.
Another way that gas chromatography is used in the food industry is to analyse the nutritional value of a product or ingredient. Running food products through the chromatography column allows manufacturers, nutritionists, and governments to understand the levels of vitamins, proteins, preservatives, additives, fats, and more in food products.
This is useful to manufacturers who have to pass government health and safety guidelines to sell their products and be able to claim specific nutritional values to display on their packaging or within their advertising campaigns. Scientists and doctors also require accurate information on nutritional values to supply patients with up-to-date health information.
Analysing the competition
Food manufacturers compete in a saturated industry and investigating your competitors' ingredients or products can be helpful. Gas chromatography helps build a clearer picture of what foods contain and how nutritional they are.
Understanding both your competitors and your suppliers' products is essential to making your own as good as possible. Food manufacturers use gas chromatography to get a clearer picture of competing products and what they contain.
They also want to make their own nutritional claims stand out against their competitors, so understanding the nutritional value of their own food products is essential to business.
More on gas chromatography
Gas chromatography is helpful for safety and nutritional analysis in the food testing industry. It helps detect harmful components, analyse dietary values, and watch competitors and suppliers. If you’d like to read more about the technique, check out the article ‘Gas Chromatography Troubleshooting Part 2 - Baseline & Response Issues’
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