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Acrylamide determination in baked potatoes by HPLC–MS: effect of steam and correlation with colour indices


Acrylamide is a toxic compound and a thermal marker of food, deriving from Maillard reaction. A recent European Regulation established mitigation measures and benchmark levels for its reduction in many products encouraging the use of colourimetric scales providing a statistical correlation between colour intensity and acrylamide content. This study was focused on acrylamide determination by liquid chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry in baked potato samples cooked at different time, temperature and steam conditions. Effect of steam on acrylamide formation has been evaluated. Portions of cooked product characterized by different colours were sampled to create a colour scale. Acrylamide level was correlated with colour indices based on RGB channels. Results showed that similar colours, even obtained under different cooking conditions, were characterized by similar acrylamide levels. Statistical elaboration of the data allowed to find a high correlation between the two sets of data and to build a colour gradation that could be a starting point to elaborate a suitable tool to provide information on acrylamide content from colour analysis.

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The authors are thankful to Dr. Maria Mattera for her precious collaboration in the research coordination.

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Correspondence to Antonella Cavazza.

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Bignardi, C., Cavazza, A., Grimaldi, M. et al. Acrylamide determination in baked potatoes by HPLC–MS: effect of steam and correlation with colour indices. Eur Food Res Technol 245, 2393–2400 (2019).

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  • Acrylamide
  • Cooking process
  • Thermal marker
  • Baked potatoes
  • Colour indices
  • Steam cooking