Dispersive SPE for EN15662: 2008 “QuEChERS” Method

By: Klaus Buckendahl, AnalytiX Volume 10 Article 4

Klaus Buckendahl, Tactical Marketing Sample Preparation, klaus.buckendahl@sial.com

  • Efficient and economic cleanup
  • P re-weighed amounts of sorbents and salts save labour and lab time
  • High-purity reagents from Sigma-Aldrich
  • Ready to use in 15 mL centrifuge tubes


QuEChERS employing dispersive SPE is a simple and fast labor to clean up food samples for pesticide analysis. (QuEChERSQuick, Easy, Cheap, Effective, Rugged, Safe; pronounced “catchers”)

The core of the method is an adsorbent based on a primary and secondary amine phase (PSA), providing a high capacity for the removal of matrix components such as sugars, organic, and fatty acids as well as polar pigment s . The Supelco® QuEChERS centrifuge tubes contain pre-weighed salt and sorbent in proportions exactly as described in the method by M. Anastassiades, one of the developers of the QuEChERS method. This method is formalized as European Standard Method EN 15662:2008 “Foods of plant origin – Determination of pesticide residues using GC-MS and/or LC-MS/MS following acetonitrile extraction/partitioning and cleanup by dispersive SPE – QuEChERS-method”.

The product portfolio covers extraction tubes with salts for adjusting the pH during sample extraction with acetonitrile, cleanup tubes with PSA and MgSO4, and cleanup tubes with PSA and additions of carbon for more pigmented samples or C18 for lipophilic matrices.

To read more about the dispersive SPE products and the QuEChERS method, visit us at sigma-aldrich.com/quechers. Literature is available for download, including the overview chart JWP (see below, available as pdf file) with the complete product listing. For an application example, please see the article “Validation of the EN 15662 Method for the Determination of Pesticide Residues using a Fused-Core™ column and Dispersive SPE (QuEChERS)” (The Reporter Europe 39) in the Technical resource section. To try this method, contact our technical service to request your free sample pack.

Related Information

As the QuEChERS/dispersive SPE approach is getting more popular, users want different salt/adsorbent mixtures for different samples than shown in the EN15662. On our website sigma-aldrich.com/custom-quechers, we offer a service for customization of dSPE products, making application-specific mixes simple and quickly available. For the newest comprehensive listing of our SPE products, download your copy of our most recent SPE brochure at sigma-aldrich.com/spe.

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