Journal of AOAC International

Determination of forchlorfenuron in fruits by solid phase or QuECHERS extraction and LC-UV or LC/MS/MS.

PMID 25051647


Forchlorfenuron, N-(2-chloro-4-pyridinyl)-N'-phenylurea, is a plant growth regulator used to increase the size of kiwifruit, apples, table grapes, and peaches and to promote increased yields of potatoes, rice, and wheat. This study reports the comparison of the performances of two extraction methods [Quick, Easy, Cheap, Effective, Rugged, and Safe (QuEChERS) and SPE] and two analytical methods (LC-UV and a LC/MS/MS) when determining forchlorfenuron in apples, kiwis, and grapes. Both extraction methods gave recoveries of forchlorfenuron from fruits >70%. The QuEChERS method was cheaper, safer, and less time-consuming than the SPE method and can be recommended for routine analysis. The LOQ was 2 and 10 microg/kg for the LC/MS/MS and LC-UV analysis, respectively. The LOD was 1 and 5 microg/kg for the LC/MS/MS and LC-UV analysis, respectively. The sensitivity of the LC-UV analysis was adequate to measure residue levels five times lower than the maximum residue limit (MRL) of the product. The QuEChERS and SPE methods were applied to monitoring the persistence of forchlorfenuron in field-treated kiwis, and it was found that the residual concentration was already much lower than the MRL 7 days after treatment.