Potential for short-term migration of mineral oil hydrocarbons from coated and uncoated food contact paper and board into a fatty food simulant

Eun Chul Pack, Dae Yong Jang, Min Gi Cha, Ye Ji Koo, Hyung Soo Kim, Hong Hyeon Yu, Seok Chan Park, Young Soon Kim, Kyung Min Lim, Seung Ha Lee, Dal Woong Choi

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11 Scopus citations


Mineral oil hydrocarbons (MOH) are widely used in the food industry for applications such as printing inks, additives, adhesives, and processing aids for food additives. Recently, the migration of MOH from food contact paper and board into foods has raised public health concerns. In this study, a total of 110 food contact paper and board samples, including baking and cooking paper (23), baking cups (28), food packaging bags (22), lunch boxes (8), party plates (26), and straws (3) were evaluated to quantify the content and short-term migration levels of MOH. The MOH were separated into mineral oil saturated hydrocarbons (MOSH)/polyolefin oligomeric saturated hydrocarbons (POSH) and mineral oil aromatic hydrocarbons (MOAH) via a validated on-line liquid chromatography−gas chromatography−flame ionisation detection (LC–GC–FID) technique. The coating materials of the sample products comprised polyethylene, polypropylene, polyethylene terephthalate, and silicone. The effects of the coating materials on the content and migration of MOH/POSH were evaluated. Quantitative analysis of the MOH in the samples showed that the MOSH/POSH and MOAH content varied widely, ranging from 16 to 5626 mg kg−1 for MOH, regardless of the coating materials. Short-term migration of MOSH/POSH was observed only in samples with polyolefinic coatings, such as polyethylene and polypropylene, in experiments conducted at 25 °C for 10 min, although the extent of MOAH migration for all samples was at the trace level. The migration of MOSH/POSH was detected within the range of 0.93 to 62.3 μg L−1 in 22 samples, and the migration of MOAH was detected within the range of 0.80 to 2.6 μg L−1 in only 4 samples. These results demonstrate that although the short-term migration potential of MOH is generally negligible, the migration of MOSH/POSH into wet fatty foods can be accelerated by polyolefinic coatings, even within a very short time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)858-868
Number of pages11
JournalFood Additives and Contaminants - Part A Chemistry, Analysis, Control, Exposure and Risk Assessment
Issue number5
StatePublished - 3 May 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by a grant [18162MFDS006] from the National Institute of Food and Drug Safety Evaluation, and Basic Science Research Program [2017R1D1A1B03034403] through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education, Republic of Korea.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, © 2020 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


  • food contact paper and board
  • migration study
  • mineral oil aromatic hydrocarbons
  • Mineral oil hydrocarbons
  • mineral oil-saturated hydrocarbons
  • on-line HPLC–GC– FID


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