Abstract: Apple juice is a complex mixture of volatile and nonvolatile components. To develop discrimination models on the basis of the volatile composition for an efficient classification of apple juices according to apple variety and geographical origin, chromatography volatile profiles of 50 apple juice samples belonging to 6 varieties and from 5 counties of Shaanxi (China) were obtained by headspace solid-phase microextraction coupled with gas chromatography. The volatile profiles were processed as continuous and nonspecific signals through multivariate analysis techniques. Different preprocessing methods were applied to raw chromatographic data. The blind chemometric analysis of the preprocessed chromatographic profiles was carried out. Stepwise linear discriminant analysis (SLDA) revealed satisfactory discriminations of apple juices according to variety and geographical origin, provided respectively 100% and 89.8% success rate in terms of prediction ability. Finally, the discriminant volatile compounds selected by SLDA were identified by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The proposed strategy was able to verify the variety and geographical origin of apple juices involving only a reduced number of discriminate retention times selected by the stepwise procedure. This result encourages the similar procedures to be considered in quality control of apple juices.
Practical Application: This work presented a method for an efficient discrimination of apple juices according to apple variety and geographical origin using HS-SPME-GC-MS together with chemometric tools. Discrimination models developed could help to achieve greater control over the quality of the juice and to detect possible adulteration of the product.