Plasticizers and BPA in spices and aromatic herbs of Mediterranean areas
This research is carried out in order to characterize the actual contamination by two ubiquitous environmental pollutants, plasticizers and Bisphenol A, in spices (black pepper, caraway and coriander) and aromatic herbs (fennel, laurel, mint, oregano, rosemary, thyme and verbena) from Algeria (n = 26), Tunisia (n = 65) and Italy (n = 53). Algerian samples seem to contain fewer residues than Italian and Tunisian samples. Among the Italian samples, only aromatic herbs, precisely mint, oregano, and laurel, were contaminated. In general, all Tunisian samples showed five plasticizers residues: the caraway, among the spices, and the rosemary, among the aromatic herbs, are found to contain more residues. Also, dietary intake of these contaminants by spices and aromatic herbs under analysis seems not to constitute a risk to the consumers.