Evaluation of saffron (Crocus sativus L.) adulteration with plant adulterants by (1)H NMR metabolite fingerprinting.Food Chem. 2015 Apr 15; 173:890-6.FC
In the present work, a preliminary study for the detection of adulterated saffron and the identification of the adulterant used by means of (1)H NMR and chemometrics is reported. Authentic Greek saffron and four typical plant-derived materials utilised as bulking agents in saffron, i.e., Crocus sativus stamens, safflower, turmeric, and gardenia were investigated. A two-step approach, relied on the application of both OPLS-DA and O2PLS-DA models to the (1)H NMR data, was adopted to perform authentication and prediction of authentic and adulterated saffron. Taking into account the deficiency of established methodologies to detect saffron adulteration with plant adulterants, the method developed resulted reliable in assessing the type of adulteration and could be viable for dealing with extensive saffron frauds at a minimum level of 20% (w/w).