Targeted and Untargeted Detection of Skim Milk Powder Adulteration by Near-Infrared Spectroscopy

Edoardo Capuano*, Rita Boerrigter-Eenling, Alex Koot, S.M. van Ruth

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


In the present study, near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) was explored as a fast and reliable screening method for the detection of adulteration of skim milk powder (SMP). Sixty genuine SMP were adulterated with acid whey (1–25 % w/w), starch (2 and 5 %) and maltodextrin (2 and 5 %) for a total of 348 adulterated samples. Two chemometric approaches were employed. In the first approach, an untargeted one class model for genuine skim milk powder was developed by Soft Independent Modelling of Class Analogy. In the second approach, adulterant-specific regression models were developed to assess the amount of each adulterant by partial least square regression and principal component regression. The class modelling approach had the advantage that several adulterants could be detected with the same chemometric model, including situations where multiple adulterants are present in the test sample or where yet unknown adulterants are present. Regression models showed a better sensitivity with genuine SMP samples completely discriminated from samples adulterated with 5 % acid whey and 2 % of starch or maltodextrin. NIRS proved to be a useful tool for the rapid and cost-efficient untargeted and/or targeted detection of adulterations in SMP.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2125-2134
JournalFood Analytical Methods
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Acid whey
  • Adulteration
  • Class modelling
  • Near-infrared spectroscopy
  • Skim milk powder
  • Starch


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