Sensory Analysis Blog

Analyiss of ethanol purity and off-odor contaminants

Analysis of purity and off-odor contamination in food grade ethanol

In industries where non-denatured alcohol is used for food products manufacturing (spirits, flavors and extracts, vinegar, food dyes, candy glazes, yeast, various sprays, animal-feed supplements, etc), quality is critical. Food grade alcohol is assessed by organoleptic and analytical chemical methods to check it is neutral and free of foreign odors and tastes.

With our HERACLES Fast Gas Chromatography Electronic Nose you can analyze food grade ethanol to verify its purity and sensory conformity.
For an analysis aimed at checking the purity (ethanol percentage) of ethanol used for spirits production, several batches of ethanol were tested with HERACLES instrument. In particular, contaminated ethanol samples with noticeable off-odors were compared to odorless ethanol representing the reference quality.

The results confirmed that HERACLES electronic nose can detect low amounts of contaminants or traces of denaturants that may be responsible of unwanted off-odors in food grade ethanol. Thanks to its high sensitivity of detection, the chemical and sensory analyzer can also differentiate samples that can seem acceptable upon human testing whereas they may show a different volatile profile.
For more information about the analysis of the purity and off-odor contaminants in food grade ethanol request application note ANH28.

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