LEVELS OF POLYCYCLIC AROMATIC HYDROCARBONS IN SOME BRANDS OF PASTAS IN NIGERIAN MARKET- AN ASSESSMENT OF POSSIBLE POTENTIAL HEALTH RISK
Concentrations of 16 priority polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) were determined in 30 brands of Nigerian and imported pastas in Nigerian market. The pasta samples were categorised into (1) noodles (2) spaghetti and (3) macaroni. Analysis were performed by GC – MS after soxhlet extraction of the sample and clean up of the extract. The concentration of Σ16 PAHs in both the Nigerian and imported brands are in the range of 0.009 to 0.8 mgkg-1 and 0.002 to 0.007 mgkg-1 respectively. The Bap concentrations in 75% of the Nigerian samples were less than 0.001mgkg-1 permissible limit specified for processed cereal based food while all the brands of imported samples were below the maximum limit. The concentrations of Σ8 carcinogenic PAHs in both the Nigerian and imported brands ranged from 0.001 to 0.01 mgkg-1 and 0.001 to 0.004 mgkg-1 respectively. The Margin of Exposure based on PAH8 as an indicator for the occurrence and effects of PAHs in food for generally exposed individuals were less than 10,000 in 25% and 0% for child and Adult scenarios respectively for Nigerian brands. For typically exposed individuals, it were 38% and 0% for child and Adult scenarios respectively. For imported brands of pastas, the MOE values were far higher than 10,000 for generally and typically exposed individuals in both child and Adult cases. The MOE values indicate serious concern particularly for children who are consumers of Nigerian brands.