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Multi/Multi Methods (MMM) in Food Analysis

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  • Hansjoerg Majer
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More and more laboratories are facing more and more pressure in both, time and price. More work has to be done in shorter time. Customers are deciding on a cent-to-cent base per analysis whether they will place an order to one contract laboratory or to another. Production laboratories are requested for shorter Turn-Around-Times (TAT) to let production be more precise or to shorten delay times for logistics. Due to increased potential of instrumental infrastructure like Triple Quads, Q-TOFs and other detection techniques as well as automated sample preparation possibilities there is a trend observable towards Multi/Multi Methods (MMM). A Multi/Multi Method is a combination of two or more Multi-Methods (Screening Methods).

During EPRW, Dr. Anna Romanotto and co-workers from the well known Eurofins-Sophia Food Safety Laboratory in Berlin published a poster with their method of "Simultaneous Clean Up and Measurement of 190 Pesticides, EPA PAHs, 18 Plasticizers, Bisphenol A and Non-Dioxine-Like PCBs in Fat and Oil Samples".

Such a highly sophisticated method demands high end  instrumentalization and has very dedicated demands to the chromatographic system, especially to the separation column. A suitable column needs to have sufficient separation power to produce an evenly spread chromatogram, with no clusters of compounds to make MS determination difficult, and must separate difficult pairs of compounds with isobaric fragmentation patterns.

For this method is designed as a high sample throughput method, dealing with difficult matrices, also a long term stability and a batch to batch reliability is requested.

For this fully validated method Dr. Romaotto and her crew has chosen a Restek Rxi-17 Sil MS column (L=30m; ID=0,25 mm; dF=0,25 µm) as best fit for this challenging task.

Please find more details about this Time and Cost saving method and the original published poster here