Infrared spectroscopy for the characterization and quality control of Moringa oleifera: a multivariate approach

C. Rébufa, I. Pany, N. Dupuy, I. Bombarda
Moringa oleifera is known for its nutritional and therapeutic potential. This potential is linked to the chemical composition whose variability according to the ecological characteristics and development processes (from harvesting to packaging) can be significant. The influence of parameters such as altitude, weather conditions (temperature, humidity, precipitation), parts of the plant used as well as the influence of the processes for extracting active compounds, the quality of the finished product and/or its maturity level can be apprehended by statistical studies of analytical data. The ultimate goal is to use spectroscopy to ensure the quality control and traceability of different M. oleifera samples. Preliminary results on the mineral contents of moringa plant parts (leaf, stem, bark and flower) show a differentiation depending on the geographical origin (arid zone or wetland). The use of spectroscopic technics associated with chemometric treatments allowed the differentiation of plant parts (leaf, stem and flower) on the basis of their chemical composition and gave information on the quality of the process (leaf/stem ratio in a powder of dry material or water content for example). Water content of leaves is an important parameter during harvesting, drying, storage or industrial processing for the evaluation and the control of spoilage risks if leaves are used as food commodity. Sorption isotherms of M. oleifera leaf powders were used as models to give information about their humidity equilibrium and their shelf life if they are used as dietary supplement. To achieve our goal, we depend on the validation of a large and representative sample by local experts.
Rébufa, C., Pany, I., Dupuy, N. and Bombarda, I. (2017). Infrared spectroscopy for the characterization and quality control of Moringa oleifera: a multivariate approach. Acta Hortic. 1158, 397-404
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2017.1158.45
Moringa oleifera, chemical composition, traceability, spectroscopic techniques, infrared, chemometrics, moisture sorption isotherm

Acta Horticulturae