N-nitrosamines migrating from food contact materials into food simulants: analysis and quantification by means of HPLC-APCI-MS/MS.
It was the aim of the work described here to develop a validated analytical method for the determination of N-nitrosamines in food simulants. Here, we present the validation of a liquid chromatography-atmospheric pressure chemical ionisation-tandem mass spectrometry method for the determination of 13 N-nitrosamines in the food simulants deionised water, 3% acetic acid and 10% ethanol. Method validation encompassed linearity, LOD, LOQ, recovery, precision and stability of the N-nitrosamines. The method was found to be sufficiently rugged and suitable for routine analysis. In addition, the developed method is on average 10 times more sensitive than the gas chromatography-thermal energy analyser (GC-TEA) method that is currently stipulated in Recommendation XXI for commodities based on natural and synthetic rubber issued by the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR). The developed method was applied to determine the N-nitrosamine contents in migration solutions of 12 elastomer samples covering a range of different elastomer types. In 10 out of 12 samples, N-nitrosamines were determined. In most samples, the guidance value of 1 µg/dm2 specified in BfR Recommendation XXI was not exceeded. In conclusion, the analytical method presented here offers a useful alternative to the GC-TEA method currently stipulated in BfR Recommendation XXI. This is of wider relevance, since BfR recommendations are used for compliance assessment of Article 3, paragraph 1 a of the Regulation (EC) No. 1935/2004 with respect to their health safety.
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