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Food Addit Contam Part A Chem Anal Control Expo Risk Assess. 2014;31(9):1605-15. doi: 10.1080/19440049.2014.941947. Epub 2014 Aug 7.

Contamination of wines and spirits by phthalates: types of contaminants present, contamination sources and means of prevention.

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a Laboratoire Excell , Parc Innolin , 33700 Mérignac , France.


This research determines the concentrations of various phthalates in French wines and grape spirits marketed in Europe or intended for export. Dibutyl phthalate (DBP), diethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP) and butyl benzyl phthalate (BBP) were the most frequently detected compounds in the wines analysed. While only 15% of the samples examined contained quantifiable concentrations (> 0.010 mg kg(-1)) of DEHP and BBP, 59% of the wines contained significant quantities of DBP, with a median value as high as 0.0587 mg kg(-1). Only 17% of the samples did not contain any detectable quantity of at least one of the phthalates and 19% contained only non-quantifiable traces. In the spirits analysed, DBP (median = 0.105 mg kg(-1)) and DEHP (median = 0.353 mg kg(-1)) were the substances measured at the highest concentrations, as well as the most frequently detected (90% of samples). BBP was present in 40% of the samples at an average concentration of 0.026 mg kg(-1). Di-isobutyl phthalate (DiBP), which is not permitted in contact with food, was found in 25% of the spirits tested. According to the specific migration limits (SML) for materials in contact with food, slightly more than 11% of the wines analysed were non-compliant, as they exceeded the SML for DBP (0.3 mg kg(-1)); just under 4% were close to the SML for DEHP. Concerning spirits, 19% of the samples analysed were considered non-compliant to the SML for DBP and nearly 7% were close to the SML for DEHP. The aged grape spirits analysed were often excessively contaminated with DiBP, which is not permitted to be used in contact with food (> 0.01 mg kg(-1)). A study of various materials frequently present in wineries revealed that a relatively large number of polymers sometimes contained high concentrations of phthalates. However, the epoxy resin coatings used on vats represented the major source of contamination.


DBP; DEHP; food contact; phthalate; spirit; wine

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