Since 2004 Tentamus Agriparadigma has been analyzing organic micropollutants (prevalently dioxins) using official “confirmation” methods. Over the years the laboratory has gained experience and expertise in a large number of food matrices (including meat, fish, oils and fats, milk, vegetables) and animal feed, for which it has been ACCREDIA certified to UNI 17025 since 2005.
The official methods employed are EPA 1613B, EPA 1668C (for polychlorinated biphenyls “dioxin-like PCB”).
Our analytical procedure involves four steps:
- Freeze-drying of samples to facilitate the subsequent stages of analysis.
- Solvent-enabled extraction performed using automatic equipment to ensure high efficiency and extraction speed as well as low solvent consumption and minimal environmental impact.
- Purification of the extract using a preparatory system of four chromatographic columns that eliminates interferents and splits the sample into three portions, separately collecting the dioxins, the group of 12 dioxin-like PCBs and the remaining non-dioxin-like PCBs.
- Analysis by high resolution gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. The equipment works using two methods specifically optimised for dioxins and for PCBs.
The entire process is monitored at every stage using isotope-labelled standards and is verified by simultaneous analysis of blanks and artificially contaminated samples. Moreover, the lab regularly takes part in international inter-laboratory ring tests to evaluate its results with those of other laboratories worldwide.