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 Chemistry and the Environment Division (VI)

Commission on Food

Report on International IUPAC Workshop on Fats, Oils, and Oilseeds Analysis

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 21-22 November 2000

This workshop (Project No. 1999-042-1-600) was the first of its kind held by IUPAC in Brazil/Latin America. It was organized by the National Research Center for Food Technology of Embrapa, the Brazilian Agricultural Research Organization, and Dr. Regina Lago, of the Local Organizing Committee, which had as members Dr. Sonia M. Cabral de Menezes (Petrobrás, Titular Member of the IUPAC Commission on Molecular Structure and Spectroscopy, I.5) and Dr. Rosemar Antoniassi (Embrapa).

The Organizing Committee. From left to right, second row: Paul Kolodziejczyk, Carmen Dobarganes, and Marshall Pike; first row: Sonia Cabral de Menezes, Patrick Dysseler, Regina Lago, and Rasemar Antoniassi.


Brazil is a well-known vegetable oil producer (mainly of soybean oil), and this workshop presented a good opportunity for sharing industrial and academic experiences. Despite the geographical difficulties of holding the event in Rio de Janeiro, which is not a vegetable oil-producing or -processing state, the workshop attracted more than 80 participants, mostly from Brazil but also from Uruguay, Colombia, and Venezuela.

The program began with a general look at the importance of analytical data in fat technology, and it next proceeded to a discussion of the main organizations that develop/validate methods for lipid analysis (IUPAC, AOCS, and AOAC International). Because the origin of fat differs from that of food samples, the problem of lipid extraction from different matrices was treated. Three topics related to nutritional aspects were also considered on the first day: quality control of frying fats, an oxidative stability index, and phytosterols as nutraceutical products.

On the second day, instrumental analysis of fats and oils was emphasized, including trans fatty acid determination by high-resolution GC, NMR applications to lipid analysis, and ICP-MS for oilseed analysis. Analytical criteria for quality and purity evaluation of olive oils were also discussed, as well as the Codex and FOSFA requirements for storage and shipping of oils and fats and analytical methods requirements.

The interlaboratory collaborative studies carried out by the previous IUPAC Commission on Oils, Fats, and Derivatives (previously VI.6, and now merged into the Commission on Food, VI.5) resulting in the IUPAC Standard Methods for the Analysis of Oils, Fats, and Derivatives (now undergoing revision that will lead to the 8th Edition) were stressed in most of the workshop sessions. A summary was printed and distributed to all participants. Supporters of the workshop, in addition to IUPAC and Embrapa Food Technology, included FAPERJ (the Rio de Janeiro State Research Funding Agency), SBOG (Brazilian Society of Oils and Fats), SBCTA (Brazilian Society of Food Science and Technology), Nestlé Brazil, and Bank of Brazil.

The workshop provided a timely opportunity to pay homage to Dr. Leopold Hartman for his contribution to lipid chemistry. Dr. Hartman has been living in Brazil for more than three decades, and he is now 96 years old. According to many comments and messages received, the workshop was considered a success.

Dr. Regina C. A. Lago

> Published in Chem. Int. 23(4), 2001

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