The Risk Assessment of Sulphite Intake through Dried Fruit Consumption in Hamadan, Iran
Authors: F. Shoaei, A. Heshmati, M. Khorshidi
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Background: Dried fruit is one of the main sources of sulphur dioxide (SO2) exposure. The major goal of the current study was to determine SO2 concentration in some widely consumed dried fruits in Hamadan, Iran. In addition, an estimate of sulphite intake was made through the aforementioned dried fruit.
Methods: Totally, 126 dried fruit samples were randomly collected from local market in Hamadan, Iran. The sulfur dioxide, moisture contents, and pH of dried fruit samples were measured by iodometric titration, gravimetric method, and pH meter, respectively. Data analysis was performed using SPSS statistical software.
Results: The mean sulphite residue in raisin, sultana, half-dried apricot, whole-dried apricot, dried prune, peach fruit leather, and apricot fruit leather was 236.49±231.34, 485.84±217.55, 1204.00±750.21, 2257.78±1406.63, 597.32±401.82, 84.74±109.22, and 38.28±32.40 mg/kg, respectively. Eleven out of 18 (61.11%) whole-dried apricot samples and 3 out of 18 (16.66%) half-dried apricot samples had unacceptable level of sulphite. The moisture contents and pH of all dried fruit were at an acceptable level. The amount of daily sulphite exposure through the consumption of dried fruits for preschool children, adult females, and adult males were 0.53, 0.35, and 0.30 mg/kg body weight/day, respectively.
Conclusion: As the intake of sulphite through the dried fruit in Iran was lower than acceptable daily intake, it appears that the content of this food preservative in dried fruits consumed in Iran has no serious risk for Iranian consumers. However, consumers should be advised to avoid excessive consumption of dried fruits, especially whole-dried apricot.