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Journal of Food Quality
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 9698107, 11 pages
Research Article

Rapid Analysis Procedures for Triglycerides and Fatty Acids as Pentyl and Phenethyl Esters for the Detection of Butter Adulteration Using Chromatographic Techniques

1Department of Chemical Sciences, University of Naples Federico II, Via Cintia 4, 80126 Naples, Italy
2Department of Molecular Medicine and Medical Biotechnology, University of Naples Federico II, Via Pansini 5, 80131 Naples, Italy

Correspondence should be addressed to Monica Gallo

Received 31 July 2016; Revised 16 October 2016; Accepted 8 November 2016; Published 6 April 2017

Academic Editor: Marina Carcea

Copyright © 2017 Daniele Naviglio et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper presents the development of three methods for quality control, fraud detection, and authentication of butter fat and other oils/fats using chromatographic techniques, with one method for triglycerides and two methods for fatty acids (FAs). The procedure for the analysis of triglycerides requires only dissolution of the sample in -hexane and gas chromatography (GC) analysis using a capillary column. The second method is based on the transesterification of triglycerides as pentyl esters in a single-step reaction using sodium pentanoate in pentanol. The reaction proceeds at room temperature and is similar to the potassium hydroxide-catalysed transesterification of triglycerides with methanol and even more similar to the sodium methoxide method and sodium butanoate method. The advantage of using pentyl esters includes reducing the volatility of short-chain FAs, and substantial recoveries were obtained compared with methyl ester analysis. The third method involves the transesterification of triglycerides in fat through reaction with 2-phenylethanol in a single step; 2-phenylethanol possesses a chromophore, and the phenethyl esters formed are analysed by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) with UV detection.