Volume 50, Issue 5 (September 2005)

    The Determination of Nicotine and Sulfate in Supermarket Ground Beef Adulterated with Black Leaf 40

    (Received 18 February 2005; accepted 7 May 2005)

    Published Online: September

    CODEN: JFSOAD

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    Abstract

    In December 2002, approximately 250 lbs. of ground beef was adulterated with nicotine sulfate by a supermarket employee and subsequently sold to the public. Soon afterward, reports of illness associated with ground beef purchased at a single store were identified. Authorities suspected the ground beef was tainted with Black Leaf 40, a banned pesticide containing approximately 40% nicotine as nicotine sulfate. Ground beef submitted to our laboratory was analyzed in concert by high performance liquid chromatography-ultraviolet detection (HPLC-UV), gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS), and high performance anion exchange chromatography with suppressed conductivity detection. GC-MS was used to identify the samples that contained nicotine. The nicotine was confirmed and quantitated by HPLC-UV. The sulfate was identified and quantitated by high performance anion exchange chromatography with suppressed conductivity detection. Our analysis revealed that the raw tainted beef contained about 350 mg/kg nicotine free base, a potentially lethal dose of nicotine per serving for an adult. Additionally, we found elevated sulfate levels in the samples that tested positive for nicotine, providing evidence that nicotine sulfate was the probable adulterant.


    Author Information:

    Hatfield, CL

    Dasenbrock, CO
    U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Cincinnati, OH

    Jackson, DS
    U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Cincinnati, OH

    Ciolino, LA
    U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Cincinnati, OH


    Stock #: JFS2005074

    ISSN: 0022-1198

    DOI: 10.1520/JFS2005074

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    Author
    Title The Determination of Nicotine and Sulfate in Supermarket Ground Beef Adulterated with Black Leaf 40
    Symposium , 0000-00-00
    Committee E30