Milk, orange juice, olive oil, honey, saffron, apple juice, and coffee are the food ingredients that are most likely to be targets of food fraud or intentional or economically motivated tarnishing of food, according to new research.
The food products were identified from an analysis of the first U.S. public database created to gather data on risk factors for food fraud published in the Journal of Food Science, according to Food Product Design. Food fraud includes the deliberate addition, tampering, substitution or misrepresentation of food ingredients, food, or food packaging. It also includes making misleading or false statements about a product for monetary gain.
Examples of food fraud include the partial substitution of olive oil with hazelnut oil or partially replacing low-quality spices with lead chromate to imitate the color of spices that are higher quality spices.
The authors of the paper note that food fraud may be more hazardous than traditional food supply threats because the people committing the crime use adulterants that are unconventional and are extremely difficult to find through routine analysis.