Major volatile compounds in head-space above olive oil analysed by selected ion flow tube mass spectrometry.Rapid Commun Mass Spectrom. 2005; 19(16):2272-8.RC
Selected ion flow tube mass spectrometry (SIFT-MS) is a technique that is well suited to the real-time analysis of head-space. SIFT-MS gives a non-discriminatory snapshot of the volatiles present and their amounts, and is considered to display less bias than chromatographic techniques as neither sample pre-treatment nor separation are necessary in most cases. The technique has been used for analysis of virgin olive oil head-space on more than 100 different oils. Twenty of these are reported. The results obtained using this technique differ from those normally reported from chromatographic analyses in that the dominant species in the head-space of all oils tested were methanol and ethanol. These volatiles were present in the head-space in the concentration ranges of 2.8-11.3 ppm (methanol) and 0.4-4.9 ppm (ethanol). (E)-2-Hexenal, normally reported as the dominant olive oil volatile, is found in significantly lower concentrations and is in the range of 0.02-1.6 ppm.