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High accuracy method for measuring pesticides in soybean

The JRC developed and in-house validated an analytical method for the accurate determination of eight pesticides in soybeans
Jul 11 2019

JRC scientists developed and validated a high accuracy method for the determination of eight pesticides in soybeans.

The method could also be used for the reliable quantification of these pesticides in other food products.

Soybean is a high source of protein, lipid, vitamin and minerals. That is why it is mainly used as food and feed as well as for industrial and technical applications for example, in cosmetics, textiles or biofuels. The EU is the second largest importer of soybean in the world.

Especially for use in food and feed, imported soybean is checked for compliance with legislation, among others for its content of pesticides. The good quality of the results of such analysis is essential to make sure the soya entering the EU market is safe for consumption.

The JRC developed and in-house validated an analytical method for the accurate determination of eight pesticides in soybeans. It allows the reliable quantification of diazinon, malathion, chlorpyrifos, captan, endosulfan, tebuconazole, iprodione and cypermethrin in soybean.

It is based on gas chromatography/mass spectrometry, using stable isotope-labelled pesticide analogues as internal standards. The final expanded uncertainties (k=2) are below 4.2 % for all analytes except for tebuconazole.

To support the European Union Reference Laboratory on Pesticides and official food control in assessing the compliance with European legislation related to maximum residue limits of pesticides, the JRC has recently also released the certified reference material (ERM-BC700) as a quality assurance tool to achieve comparable results.

Read more in:

J.F. Huertas-Perez et al.: "Gas chromatography-isotope dilution mass spectrometry method validation for target pesticides in soybeans", Food Additives & Contaminants: Part A. 36 (2019) 96–108,

DOI: 10.1080/19440049.2018.1538571