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Keywords:

  • Acrylonitrile–styrene resin (AS);
  • acrylonitrile–styrene–butadiene resin (ABS);
  • food contact material;
  • kitchen utensil;
  • volatile substance

Abstract

Residual levels of 14 volatile substances, including 1,3-butadiene, acrylonitrile, benzene, ethylbenzene, and styrene, in 30 kitchen utensils made from acrylonitrile–butadiene–styrene resin (ABS) and acrylonitrile–styrene resin (AS) such as slicers, picks, cups, and lunch boxes in Japan were simultaneously determined using headspace gas chromatography/mass spectroscopy (HS-GC/MS). The maximum residual levels in the ABS and AS samples were found to be 2000 and 2800 μg/g of styrene, respectively. The residual levels of 1,3-butadiene ranged from 0.06 to 1.7 μg/g in ABS, and three of 15 ABS samples exceeded the regulatory limit for this compound as established by the European Union (EU). The residual levels of acrylonitrile ranged from 0.15 to 20 μg/g in ABS and from 19 to 180 μg/g in AS. The levels of this substance in seven ABS and six AS samples exceeded the limit set by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Furthermore, the levels of acrylonitrile in three AS samples exceeded the voluntary standard established by Japanese industries. These results clearly indicate that the residual levels of some volatile compounds are still high in ABS and AS kitchen utensils and further observations are needed.