Coffee confirmation

An international team has used nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR) to identify whether or not coffee beans have been adulterated or contaminated with coffee beans from other regions, this showing how useful an analytical tool it can be in the fight against food fraud in a high-value market. Specifically, the team used proton NMR and a trained expert system to demonstrate that they can differentiate with 100% precision between Arabica coffees from different South American and Central American countries. The high-quality fingerprinting technique avoids the deuterated solvents required of other techniques and the analysis could be readily automated; a first in coffee extract analysis, the team reports in the journal Food Chemistry.