Handheld Raman for rapid screening for the oil type used in potato chip manufacturing

Research poster
Siyu Yao
Luis Rodriguez-Saona
Department of Food Science and Technology

Oil is a key ingredient in potato chip manufacturing serving as heat transfer agent and providing flavor and texture. As the trend toward wellness keeps gaining strength, selection of oils can add value as healthier alternatives. Adulteration of high-price oils is a prevalent source of agricultural fraud. There is a need for reliable methods to detect oil misclassification or economically-motivated adulteration. Our objective was to develop rapid detection method to identify the type of oil used in manufacturing of potato chips and to predict the fatty acid profile of the oil based on the unique Raman spectral patterns. Our data showed that 60% of potato chips were manufactured with single oils including corn (20%), canola (8%), sunflower (18%), peanut (6%), safflower (1%) and cottonseed (7%) oils. The Raman fingerprints from oils allowed to form tight clustering of samples based on type of oil allowing excellent sensitivity and selectivity using an independent set of samples. Based on the prediction of SIMCA, 15% of potato chips were misclassified oil source on their label. In addition, the spectra allowed to predict the main fatty acids (oleic and linoleic acid) with strong correlation (Rval>0.96) and low standard error of prediction. The Raman models obtained from two handheld instruments equipped with 1064nm and 785 nm excitation laser matched the result perfectly with each other and they both had their own advantage in specific application conditions. Overall, the handheld Raman technology provides an effective tool to rapidly and in-situ identification of oil type of potato chips in the market.