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Migration from plastic food packaging during microwave heating
KTH, School of Chemical Science and Engineering (CHE), Fibre and Polymer Technology, Polymer Technology.
2012 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Microwave heating of food has increased rapidly as a food processing technique. This increases the concern that chemicals could migrate from food packaging to food. The specific effect of microwave heating in contrast to conventional heating on overall and specific migration from common plastic food storage boxes was studied in this work. The purpose was especially to determine the interaction effects of different plastics in contact with different types of foods during microwave heating. The study focused on polycarbonate (PC), poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET), polypropylene homo-polymer (PP), co-polymer (PP-C) and random co-polymer (PP-R) packages. The migration determinations were evaluated at controlled times and temperatures, using a MAE device. The migrants were analyzed by GC-MS and HPLC. ESI-MS was evaluated as a new tool for migration determinations. Food/food simulant absorption and changes in degree of crystallinity during heating were also followed.

Significant degradation of antioxidants Irgafos 168 and Irganox 1010 in PP packages occurred during microwave heating of the packages in food simulants containing ethanol, resulting in the formation of antioxidant degradation products. Degradation of PC by Fries chain rearrangement reaction leading to formation of 9,9-dimethylxanthene, and transesterification of PET leading to formation of diethyl terephthalate, were also observed after microwave heating the packages in ethanol and 90/10 isooctane/ethanol. These reactions were not observed during conventional heating of the packages at the same temperature, or after microwave heating of the packages in liquid food (coconut milk). The microwave heating also significantly increased the migration of cyclic oligomers from PET into ethanol and isooctane at 80 °C. Migration of compounds into coconut milk was slightly lower than calculated amounts using the EU mathematical model to predict migration of additives into foodstuffs. The results thus show that the use of ethanol as a fat food simulant during microwave heating can lead to a significant overestimation of migration as well as degradation of polymer or the incorporated additives.

Some other detected migrants were dimethylbenzaldehyde, 4-ethoxy-ethyl benzoate, benzophenone, m-tert-butyl phenol and 1-methylnaphthalene. All identified migrants with associated specific migration limit (SML) values migrated in significantly lower amounts than the SML values during 1 h of microwave heating at 80 °C. The antioxidant diffusion coefficients in PP and PP co-polymers showed larger relative differences than the corresponding degrees of crystallinity in the same polymers and PP-R showed by far the fastest migration of antioxidants.

Abstract [sv]

Mikrovågsuppvärmning av mat har ökat markant under de senaste åren. Detta ökar risken för att ämnen i plast migrerar från matförpackningar till mat. Den specifika effekten av mikrovågsvärmning i kontrast till konventionell värmning på total och specifik migrering från vanliga matförvaringslådor av plast studerades i denna avhandling. Syftet var i huvudsak att bestämma interaktionseffekter mellan olika typer av plaster och olika typer av mat under mikrovågsvärmning. Studien fokuserades på förpackningar av polykarbonat (PC), polyetentereftalat (PET), polypropylen homopolymer (PP), copolymer (PP-C) och random copolymer (PP-R). Migreringstesterna utfördes under kontrollerade tider och temperaturer genom att använda MAE. Migranterna analyserades med hjälp av GC-MS och HPLC. ESI-MS-analys utvärderades också som ny analysmetod för migreringstester. Absorption av mat- och matsimulanter samt förändringar i kristallinitetsgrad följdes också.

Signifikant nedbrytning av antioxidanterna Irgafos 168 och Irganox 1010 i PP-förpackningar inträffade under mikrovågsvärmning av förpackningarna i etanol-innehållande matsimulanter, vilket resulterade i bildning av nedbrytningsprodukter från antioxidanterna. Nedbrytning av PC genom en Fries omfördelningsreaktion, vilket orsakade bildning av 9,9-dimetylxanten, samt transesterifikation av PET, vilket orsakade bildning av dietyltereftalat, observerades också efter mikrovågsvärmning av förpackningarna i etanol och 90/10 isooktan/etanol. Dessa reaktioner observerades ej efter konventionell värmning av förpackningarna under samma temperatur och ej heller efter mikrovågsvärmning av förpackningarna i riktig mat (kokosmjölk). Mikrovågsvärmningen ökade också betydelsefullt migrering av cykliska oligomerer från PET till etanol och isooktan under 80 °C. Specifika ämnens migrering till kokosmjölk var alla något lägre än migreringsvärden beräknade m. h. a. EU's officiella matematiska modell för förutsägelse av migrering från matförpackningar till mat. Dessa resultat visar att användandet av etanol som matsimulant för fet mat under mikrovågsvärmning kan leda till betydande överestimering av migrering, samt nedbrytning av polymer och additiv i polymeren.

Andra detekterade migranter var till exempel dimetylbenzaldehyd, 4-etoxy-etylbenzoat, benzofenon, m-tertbutylfenol och 1-metylnaftalen. Alla identifierade migranter med tillhörande ‘specific migration limit’ (SML)-värden migrerade i betydelsefullt mindre mängder än ämnenas tillhörande SML-värden under 1 h mikrovågsvärmning under 80°C. Diffusionskoefficienterna för antioxidanterna i PP-förpackningarna visade större relativa skillnader än förpackningarnas motsvarande kristallinitetsgrader och migrering av antioxidanter var snabbast från PP-R.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2012. , vi, 81 p.
Series
Trita-CHE-Report, ISSN 1654-1081 ; 2012:25
Keyword [en]
migration, food packaging, microwave, degradation, food simulant, antioxidant
National Category
Polymer Chemistry
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-96078ISBN: 978-91-7501-363-3 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-96078DiVA: diva2:529398
Public defence
2012-06-08, K2, Teknikringen 28, KTH, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Formas, 2007-793
Note

QC 20120530

Available from: 2013-04-03 Created: 2012-05-30 Last updated: 2013-04-03Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Type of Polypropylene Material Significantly Influences the Migration of Antioxidants from Polymer Packaging to Food Simulants During Microwave Heating
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Type of Polypropylene Material Significantly Influences the Migration of Antioxidants from Polymer Packaging to Food Simulants During Microwave Heating
2010 (English)In: Journal of Applied Polymer Science, ISSN 0021-8995, E-ISSN 1097-4628, Vol. 118, no 2, 1084-1093 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Three different polypropylene materials, polypropylene homopolymer (PP), propylene-ethylene random copolymer (PP-R), and propylene-ethylene copolymer (PP-C) are commonly used in plastic containers designed for microwave heating of food. Migration of antioxidants, Irganox 1010 and Irgafos 168, from PP. PP-R, and PP-C during microwave heating in contact with different food simulants was investigated by utilizing microwave assisted extraction (MAE) and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The polypropylene material significantly influenced the migration rate, which decreased in the order of increasing degree of crystallinity in the materials. PP homopolymer was the most migration resistant of the studied materials especially in contact with fatty food simulants. The use of isooctane as fatty food simulant resulted in rapid depletion of antioxidants, while migration to another fatty food simulant, 96% ethanol, was much more limited. Migration to aqueous and acidic food simulants was in most cases under the detection limits irrespective of microwaving time and temperature. The diffusion coefficients were similar to what have been found previously under similar conditions but without microwaves. The effect of swelling was shown by the large increase in the calculated diffusion coefficients when isooctane was used as food simulant instead of 96% ethanol. (C) 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. I Appl Polym Sci 118: 1084-1093,2010

Keyword
polypropylene, antioxidants, chromatography, diffusion, packaging
National Category
Polymer Chemistry Polymer Technologies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-26887 (URN)10.1002/app.32472 (DOI)000280748400053 ()2-s2.0-77956249617 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20101130Available from: 2010-11-30 Created: 2010-11-29 Last updated: 2012-05-30Bibliographically approved
2. Microwave heating causes rapid degradation of antioxidants in polypropylene packaging leading to greatly increased specific migration to food simulants as shown by ESI-MS and GC-MS
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Microwave heating causes rapid degradation of antioxidants in polypropylene packaging leading to greatly increased specific migration to food simulants as shown by ESI-MS and GC-MS
2011 (English)In: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, ISSN 0021-8561, E-ISSN 1520-5118, Vol. 59, no 10, 5418-5427 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Microwave heating of commercial microwavable polypropylene packaging in contact with fatty food simulants caused significant antioxidant degradation and increased specific migration as shown by electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Degradation of the antioxidants Irgafos 168 and Irganox 1010 was not detected during conventional heating of polypropylene packaging at the same temperature. The migration into aqueous food simulants was primarily restricted by the water solubility of the migrants. Using isooctane as fatty food simulant caused significant swelling and greatly enhanced overall migration values compared to the other fatty food simulant, 99.9% ethanol, or the aqueous food simulants 10% ethanol, 3% acetic acid, or water. ESI-MS spectra clearly reflected the overall migration values, and the number and amount of compounds detected decreased as the hydrophilicity of the food simulant increased. ESI-MS was shown to be an excellent tool for the analysis of semivolatile migrants and a good complement to GC-MS analysis of volatile migrants.

Keyword
polypropylene, antioxidants, migration, food simulant, degradation
National Category
Polymer Chemistry Polymer Technologies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-32077 (URN)10.1021/jf1048639 (DOI)000290691300033 ()2-s2.0-79957934168 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20110613Available from: 2011-04-05 Created: 2011-04-05 Last updated: 2012-05-30Bibliographically approved
3. Migration from polycarbonate packaging to food simulants during microwave heating
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Migration from polycarbonate packaging to food simulants during microwave heating
2012 (English)In: Polymer degradation and stability, ISSN 0141-3910, E-ISSN 1873-2321, Vol. 97, no 8, 1387-1395 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The interactions between polycarbonate (PC) packaging and different food simulants during microwave heating were evaluated by identifying the compounds migrating into aqueous, alcoholic and fatty food simulants. The migration of compounds, such as 9,9-dimethylxanthene and m-tert-butyl-phenol, from the PC package to ethanol and isooctane increased significantly during microwave heating as compared to conventional heating. The increase in migration can be explained by degradation caused by microwave heating and/or stronger food simulant interactions. Depending on the food simulant the migrants were quantified either by multiple headspace–solid-phase micro-extraction (MHS-SPME) or direct injection in combination with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. A partial least squares (PLS) regression model was developed to predict the extraction efficiency for headspace–solid-phase micro-extraction (HS-SPME) of food package migrants from the analyte properties. The most significant property for prediction of the enrichment factors was the octanol-water partition coefficient (log Kow). Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) and polydimethylsiloxane/divinylbenzene (PDMS/DVB) fibers were compared for the extraction of the migrants. High correlation was found between the PDMS and PDMS/DVB enrichment factors (R2=0.98), but the extraction by PDMS/DVB fiber was much more efficient compared to the extraction by PDMS fiber. The detection limits after SPME extraction by PDMS/DVB fiber were 1, 0.1 and 3 ng/L for 4-ethoxy-ethyl-benzoate, 2,4-di-tert-butyl-phenol and benzophenone, respectively.

Keyword
migration, food packaging, polycarbonate, partial least squares regression model, solid-phase microextraction
National Category
Polymer Chemistry
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-96075 (URN)10.1016/j.polymdegradstab.2012.05.017 (DOI)000306886500018 ()2-s2.0-84863726669 (Scopus ID)
Funder
Formas, 2007-793
Note

QC 20120807

Available from: 2012-05-30 Created: 2012-05-30 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
4. Combined Chromatographic and Mass Spectrometric Toolbox for Fingerprinting Migration from PET Tray during Microwave Heating
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Combined Chromatographic and Mass Spectrometric Toolbox for Fingerprinting Migration from PET Tray during Microwave Heating
2013 (English)In: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, ISSN 0021-8561, E-ISSN 1520-5118, Vol. 61, no 6, 1405-1415 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A combined chromatographic and mass spectrometric toolbox was utilized to determine the interactions between poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET) food packaging and different food simulants during microwave heating. Overall and specific migration was determined by combining weight loss measurements with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS). This allowed mapping of low molecular weight migrants in the molecular range up to 2000 g/mol. Microwave heating caused significantly faster migration of cyclic oligomers into ethanol and isooctane as compared to migration during conventional heating at the same temperature. This effect was more significant at lower temperature at which diffusion rates are generally lower. It was also shown that transesterification took place between PET and ethanol during microwave heating, leading to formation of diethyl terephthalate. The detected migrants included cyclic oligomers from dimer to hexamer, in most cases containing extra ethylene glycol units, and oxidized Irgafos 168. ESI-MS combined with CID MS-MS was an excellent tool for structural interpretation of the nonvolatile compounds migrating to the food simulants. The overall migration was below the overall migration limit of 10 mg/dm(2) set by the European commission after 4 h of microwave heating at 100 degrees C in all studied food simulants.

Keyword
migration, food packaging, PET, microwave, ESI-MS
National Category
Polymer Chemistry
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-96077 (URN)10.1021/jf3047847 (DOI)000315079800032 ()2-s2.0-84873688146 (Scopus ID)
Funder
Formas, 2007-793
Note

QC 20120530. Updated from manuscript to article in journal.

Available from: 2012-05-30 Created: 2012-05-30 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved

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