Determination and Quantitation of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in Spice Matrices via GC/MS
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Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are a broad class of organic compounds characterized by two or more fused, aromatic ring structures. Many of these compounds have carcinogenic and mutagenic effects making them highly regulated. PAHs are formed by the incomplete combustion of organic material and can be found at trace levels in substances including automobile emissions, tobacco smoke, and food. In spices, PAHs are produced during flame drying in comparison to sun drying. PAH4 compounds serve as a representative sample of all PAHs in food products. The FDA approved limit in spices is 10 μg/L for BaP and 50 μg/L for PAH4.