Qualitative and quantitative food authentication of oregano using NGS and NMR with chemometrics

Friedemann Flügge, Tim Kerkow, Paulina Kowalski, Josephine Bornhöft, Eva Seemann, Marina Creydt, Burkhard Schütze, Ulrich L. Günther*

*Corresponding author for this work
8 Citations (Scopus)


Culinary herbs and spices represent increasingly popular food products, especially in an environment of increased consciousness of food quality. Health-conscious consumers expect clean and reliable labels for food products. For spices this implies significant challenges considering complex and long supply chains, often with unknown sources or intermediates. A recent report by the EU Joint Research Centre identified oregano as one of the most vulnerable spices for adulterations. The analysis of herbs is complex, traditionally using visual inspection, and more recently genetic and chemical analysis. Here, metabarcoding by next generation sequencing (NGS) has been used to identify the nature of oregano products and possible adulterations. In parallel, metabolite extracts are generated and analysed on a 400 MHz Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectrometer. NMR metabolic profiles in conjunction with multivariate statistics was used to identify oregano species and to identify and quantify the level of adulteration with other plant products.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109497
JournalFood Control
Publication statusPublished - 03.2023

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)

DFG Research Classification Scheme

  • 205-17 Endocrinology, Diabetology, Metabolism

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