Stable isotope ratio measurements of royal jelly samples for controlling production procedures: impact of sugar feeding

Abstract : The carbon and nitrogen stable ratios of royal jelly (RJ) samples from various origins are determined using an elemental analyser linked online to an isotope ratio mass spectrometer to evaluate authenticity and adulteration. The 13C/12C and 15N/14N stable isotope ratios are measured in more than 500 RJs (domestic, imported and derived from feeding experiments) in order to obtain isotopic measurements that take into account seasonal, botanical and geographical effects. Authenticity intervals are established for traditional beekeeping practices, without feeding, in the range −22.48 to −27.90‰ for δ13C. For these samples, the δ15N values range from −1.58 to 7.98‰, depending on the plant sources of pollen and nectar. The δ13C values of the commercial samples vary from −18.54 to −26.58‰. High δ13C values are typical of sugar cane or corn syrups which have distinctive isotopic 13C signatures because both plants use the C4 photosynthetic cycle, in contrast to most RJs which are derived from C3 plants. These differences in the 13C-isotopic composition allow the detection of the addition of such sugars. RJs from traditional sources and from industrial production by sugar feeding are thus successfully distinguished.
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Submitted on : Monday, August 22, 2011 - 11:04:06 AM
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Gaëlle Daniele, Marine Wytrychowski, Magali Batteau, Sylvie Guibert, Hervé Casabianca. Stable isotope ratio measurements of royal jelly samples for controlling production procedures: impact of sugar feeding. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry, Wiley, 2011, 25 (14), pp.1929-1932. 〈10.1002/rcm.5070〉. 〈hal-00616342〉

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