With an increased focus on healthy living and the consumption of healthy foods, interest in the nutritional quality of the fruit we consume has become more important. When fresh fruit is not available, dried fruit is often substituted, and manufacturers and customers would like to know that the dried fruit has not lost some nutritional value during processing. One way of monitoring the quality of fresh or dried fruit is by measuring the micronutrient concentration contained within. Micronutrients are represented by trace elements considered to be nutritionally valuable, and it is these elements that can be analyzed via various inorganic analytical methods.
While ICP-OES is generally favored as a multi-element analytical method, the cost savings, simplicity and speed of operation of flame atomic absorption (AA) provides an attractive alternative. This work demonstrates the ability of the PinAAcle™ 900 AA spectrometer coupled to a FAST Flame sample automation accessory to analyze common nutritional elements in a variety of fresh and dried fruit.