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Food chemistry

Multi-element, multi-compound isotope profiling as a means to distinguish the geographical and varietal origin of fermented cocoa (Theobroma cacao L.) beans.


PMID 26041233

Abstract

Multi-element stable isotope ratios have been assessed as a means to distinguish between fermented cocoa beans from different geographical and varietal origins. Isotope ratios and percentage composition for C and N were measured in different tissues (cotyledons, shells) and extracts (pure theobromine, defatted cocoa solids, protein, lipids) obtained from fermented cocoa bean samples. Sixty-one samples from 24 different geographical origins covering all four continental areas producing cocoa were analyzed. Treatment of the data with unsupervised (Principal Component Analysis) and supervised (Partial Least Squares Discriminant Analysis) multiparametric statistical methods allowed the cocoa beans from different origins to be distinguished. The most discriminant variables identified as responsible for geographical and varietal differences were the δ(15)N and δ(13)C values of cocoa beans and some extracts and tissues. It can be shown that the isotope ratios are correlated with the altitude and precipitation conditions found in the different cocoa-growing regions.

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T4500
Theobromine, ≥98.0%
C7H8N4O2