Contaminants in food and feed


DTU Food – National Food Institute has a total staff of approximately 335 working in five departments and is a department at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU). The institute focuses on public health in relation to human nutrition, food safety, environment and health. Activities include the aspects of food products throughout the entire food chain, from primary agricultural production and industrial processing, to preparation in the consumer’s home and evaluating the impact on human health. The main disciplines are nutrition, chemistry, toxicology, microbiology, technology and epidemiology. The activities include research, scientifically based risk assessments and advisory services to Danish and international authorities and industry. DTU Food monitor food consumption patterns and the national food safety situation, and provide diagnostic and analytical services mainly based on accredited and standardised analysis methods.


The development and validation of analytical methods for determination of trace elements and trace elements species in food and feed is an expertise within the Food Chemistry department of DTU Food. DTU Food has special expertise in the field of trace element speciation analysis using coupled techniques such as HPLC/GC-ICPMS.

DTU Food is part of the national food safety contingency plan and is the national reference laboratory for chemical and microbial food safety. The institute also serves as an international reference laboratory for the EU, WHO (World Health Organization) and EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) in a number of areas: EU Reference Laboratory for Pesticides in Cereals and Feedingstuffs, EU Reference Laboratory for Antimicrobial Resistance, WHO Collaborating Centre for Antimicrobial Resistance in Foodborne Pathogens, WHO Collaborating Centre for Food Contamination Monitoring (GEMS Food) and EFSA Zoonoses Collaboration Centre.

DTU Food is the Danish national reference laboratory for trace elements in foodstuffs and a partner of EVISA (European Virtual Institute for Speciation Analysis).


Participates in WP3 and WP5 : DTU Food holds the leadership in WP3 on heavy metals. The main task is to develop a SPE-AAS based method for quantification of inorganic As in food of marine origin and feed, and additionally develop a SPE-AAS based method for quantification of methylmercury in feed and food of marine origin. Already developed HPLC/GC-ICPMS methods for detection of either inorganic arsenic and methylmercury for confirmatory analysis will be used as support for quantification of both inorganic arsenic and methylmercury. Another task for DTU Food is to give support to TUT, which is also partner in WP 3, on sample handling and sample pre-treatment issues of feed and food. The developed methods will be used in surveys on the inorganic arsenic and methylmercury content in marine based food and feed on the European market.


Contact :

Dr Jens J. Sloth

National Food Institute-Technical University of Denmark
Department of food chemistry
Mørkhøj Bygade 19
DK 2860 Søborg
Tel : +45 7234 7625
Fax : +45 7234 7001
Email : food@food.dtu.dk
Web site : http://www.food.dtu.dk

Staff :

Dr. Jens J. Sloth :

Senior scientist at Department of Food Chemistry at DTU Food. 12 years of experience in determination of trace elements and trace element species in biological and environmental samples, special knowledge on arsenic speciation in marine samples.

CONffIDENCE: WP3 leader; development of SPE-AAS methods

Prof. Erik H. Larsen :

Research Professor, Team leader of the trace element group, more than 25 years of expertise in determination of trace elements and trace element species in biological samples, Project leader of several national funded research projects, Advisory board member of EVISA with foodstuffs as field of expertise, involved in development of SPE-AAS methods, the use of HPLC/GC-ICPMS and support to TUT on sample handling and pretreatment.

CONffIDENCE: working with separation methods within WP3

Dr. Rikke Vingbord Hedegaard :

Post doc at Department of Food Chemistry at DTU Food

CONffIDENCE: w orking with SPE-AAS method development within WP3.

Ms. Marianne Hansen:

Lab. Technician, more than 25 years of practical experience with chemical analysis in foodstuffs. Special skills within trace element speciation analysis using atomic spectrometric techniques..