Identification of food adulterants: a research project

Work to develop the Government Chemist capabilities in food fraud through the identification and quantification of food adulterants.

This research project will develop and maintain the Government Chemist’s capability in the identification and quantification of food adulterants using DNA as the target analyte. It aims to enable the positive identification of plant ingredients in food supplements and facilitate species detection, correct labelling of products, help prevent fraud and adulteration, ensure therapeutic potency, minimise unfair trade and raise consumer confidence.

The project will aid in the traceability of plant products from around the world, enabling monitoring of potential overuse, sustainability, and impact upon the environment and biodiversity.

The project will result in the transfer of appropriate rapid DNA methods for food analysis to public analysts and trade laboratories.

This research project runs from 2011 to 2014.


  1. Food fraud: measurement to combat food adulteration
  2. Digital polymerase chain reaction: analysis of GMOs
  3. Probiotic food: identifying bacteria using DNA sequencing
  4. Randomised experimental designs: effect on GM ingredient analysis
  5. Herbal medicinal products: DNA molecular identification
  6. Alternative instruments for food authenticity analysis
Published 1 January 2011