European Food Research and Technology

, Volume 227, Issue 1, pp 293–305 | Cite as

Selection of elderberry (Sambucus nigra L.) genotypes best suited for the preparation of elderflower extracts rich in flavonoids and phenolic acids

  • Lars P. ChristensenEmail author
  • Karl Kaack
  • Xavier C. Fretté
Original Paper


The importance of raw material and extraction parameters for obtaining a high content of flavonoids and phenolic acids in elderflower extracts was investigated. Nine phenolic acids (3-O-, 4-O-, and 5-O-caffeoylquinic acid, 3-O- and 5-O-p-coumaroylquinic acid, 1,5-di-O-, 3,4-di-O-, 3,5-di-O- and 4,5-di-O-caffeoylquinic acid) and six flavonol glycosides (quercetin-3-O-rutinoside, quercetin-3-O-glucoside, kaempferol-3-O-rutinoside, isorhamnetin-3-O-rutinoside, isorhamnetin-3-O-glucoside, and quercetin-3-O-6″-acetylglucoside) were identified and quantified in elderflowers and/or extracts thereof by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) and high-performance liquid chromatography-diode array detection (HPLC-DAD), respectively. The yield of elderflower extracts depended significantly on processing conditions and raw material properties and the maximum yield of elderflower extract was obtained by extraction for a maximum of 10 days at 4 °C using an extraction liquid consisting of a maximum of 20 w/w % sugars and 5% citric acid. The effects of the extraction liquid composition and raw material on the concentration of phenolic acids and flavonol glycosides in elderflower extracts were determined by factor analysis. Several elderberry genotypes were found to be useful for processing of elderflower extracts with a relative high concentration of phenolic acids and flavonol glycosides.


Sambucus nigra L. Elderflower Genotypes Flavonol glycosides Phenolic acids Extracts Factor analysis 



The authors wish to thank Mr. Kim G. Vitten and Mrs. Lone Borum for their excellent technical assistance and the industrial companies Bottle Green Drinks Company, Thorncroft Vineyard Ltd., Steirische Beerenobst-genossenschaft, Beerenfrost Kuelhaus GmbH, Fyns Bærdyrkerforening, Rynkeby Foods and Dansk Erhvervsfrugtavl for their financial and technical support. We also thank EU (project no. FAIR CT98 9653, Elderopt) and the Danish Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries (J. nr. 93s-2466-Å01-01432) for their financial support.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lars P. Christensen
    • 1
    Email author
  • Karl Kaack
    • 1
  • Xavier C. Fretté
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Food Science, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Research Centre AarslevUniversity of AarhusAarslevDenmark

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