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Detection of Adulteration in Iranian Olive Oils Using Instrumental (GC, NMR, DSC) Methods

This paper describes an investigation into the usefulness of some instrumental methods (GC, NMR, and DSC) in the detection of adulteration of olive oil with soybean, sunflower, and canola oils (that are relatively cheap oils mixed as adulterants with olive oil). These seed oils were compared with genuine and commercial olive oils, two of which appeared to have been adulterated. It was observed that from among physical and chemical indices, the iodine value and the refractive index in the two olive oil samples (named A and B) were significantly higher (P\0.01) than in the reference (genuine) olive oil, both values being above standard limits established for olive oil. On the other hand, fatty acid (FA) profiles in these two samples exhibited higher amounts of linolenic and linoleic acids (5.34 and 39.92%, 6.38 and 54.42%, 0.79 and 12.88% for A, B and genuine olive oils respectively) but significantly lower amounts of oleic acid (30.07, 21.72 and 67.86%, respectively). The number and intensity of signals observed using 1H NMR indicated that the peaks numbered 2 and 7 were useful in the determination of olive oil purity. Because of higher linolenic and linoleic acid contents in samples A and B, the intensity and integrated areas for these two signals were higher than those for other olive oil samples in which signal 2 was not observed and signal 7 had a very low intensity. Satisfactory results were achieved from quantitation of DSC parameters. The results show that due to increased unsaturated FAs in samples A and B and the consequent changes in triacylglycerol profiles, offset crystallization temperature and onset melting temperature in these two olive oils differed from those of the reference and clearly shifted to lower values. Crystallization and melting curves were similar to the corresponding curves observed for soybean and sunflower oils in terms of shape and number of peaks.

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