Determination of nitrite levels in maize samples from different regions of Turkey


Hacettepe University Journal of the Faculty of Pharmacy, vol.29, no.1, pp.11-24, 2009 (Scopus) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 29 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Journal Name: Hacettepe University Journal of the Faculty of Pharmacy
  • Journal Indexes: Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.11-24
  • Keywords: Food toxicity, Maize, Nitrite, Turkey
  • Lokman Hekim University Affiliated: No


Maize is a largely produced cereal grain throughout the world. Turkey is a wide-consumer and producer of maize. Maize flour is used for making bread and several meals. Nitrite content of agricultural products has been in concern of public, toxicologists, public health providers and governmental regulators for decades. Nitrites have been implicated with a variety of long-term adverse effects on the human health. Being acquainted with the origin and quality of agricultural products, as well as the quality of locally produced food, is getting more important for the consumers and health care providers. The present study was aimed to evaluate the nitrite content of maize from different regions of Turkey. We have collected totally 51 samples from Black Sea (n=15), Mediterranean (n=16), Marmara (n=12) and Central Anatolia (n=8) regions. The mean nitrite levels of maize in these regions were found to be 46.67 ± 10.63, 36.89± 6.38, 36.27 ± 7.82 and 33.8 ± 9.48 mg kg -1, respectively. The highest mean concentration of nitrite was determined in the samples from Black Sea Region, but the differences were not significant statistically. It must be considered the overall intake of the organism in one day from the other sources along with cereals. Water, vegetables and other cured-meat products may have nitrite high levels. It can be concluded that the nitrite high levels in different cereals, vegetables and fruits should be monitored routinely to prevent food-borne hazards and for the safety of susceptible populations such as infants, young children and elderly.