Chapter 14: Chemical Methods
Published:19 Dec 2017
J. C. M. Barreira, A. L. Antonio, and I. C. F. R. Ferreira, in Food Irradiation Technologies: Concepts, Applications and Outcomes, ed. I. C. F. R. Ferreira, A. L. Antonio, and S. Cabo Verde, The Royal Society of Chemistry, 2017, ch. 14, pp. 301-313.
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Irradiation technology is being progressively applied to an increasing number of different food products. The three types of irradiation that might be used on food exert distinct effects, depending on the energy and food properties, thereby implying a need for adequate detection methodologies. The effectiveness of each irradiation type, as well as its main effects on food components, is highly variable, demanding a suitable detection methodology to ensure reliable outcomes. In fact, physical, chemical, and biological methods might be used to identify irradiated foods. These methods, in addition to verifying the potential formation of secondary compounds, must be implemented to fulfill legal requirements, as well as to validate the accuracy of the specific labeling irradiated products require. Nevertheless, irradiation detection methods are considered safe, validated by scientific reports from the last 50 years, and acknowledged by international food and health organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO) and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). In the following sections, the most relevant chemical techniques to detect irradiated foods are explained in detail.