Consumers prefer to buy regional products or tend to opt for certain provenance for reasons such as sustainability and regionality. For most types of fresh fruit and vegetables, the producers and traders must declare clearly the country of origin. In order to add value to fruits and vegetables, mislabeling and smuggling of goods is very common. So, how can someone be sure to really get what they intend to buy? How is it possible to establish and maintain consumer trust when manipulation can be very diverse and goes beyond false information about the origin of a product? Isotope ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS) can help answer questions about the geographic origin and authenticity of fruits and vegetables at all points of the supply chain.
By determining and interpreting the stable isotope ratios of carbon, nitrogen, sulfur, hydrogen and oxygen of any fruit or vegetable, the so-called isotope fingerprint (consisting of all five ratios) is established which is characteristic for the sample and can be compared to reference data from reference samples from different regions or to a data base. To achieve high geographical resolution and credible results, we use our global database, as well as our expertise and know-how to provide advanced customized origin testing by including more parameters. Any information on the samples such as suspected (not declared) origin, farming style, etc. is helpful.