Inter-laboratory Comparison Programme on Sudan Dyes in Chilli Powder

Yiu-chung Wong, Analytical and Advisory Services Division, Government Laboratory, Homantin, Hong Kong.


An inter-laboratory comparison programme (HKGL0904) for the determination of seven Sudan dyes in chilli powder was organized by the Government Laboratory of Hong Kong in 2009. The programme involved the quantitative determination of Sudan I and Sudan IV, and the identification of Sudan II, Sudan III, Sudan orange G, Sudan red 7B and dimethyl yellow in two test samples. HKGL0904 was one of the ad hoc studies offered to local testing laboratories to respond to some “hot issue” food contaminants. The primary objectives of the programme were to examine the capability of participants for the analysis of Sudan dyes in food matrices and to assist their preparation for an accreditation application. In total 11 local laboratories registered in the programme and 10 of them returned results. No unsatisfactory z-score for Sudan I or IV was detected on the basis of consensus values and Horwitz standard deviation in the assessment. Identification of the other five Sudan dyes was satisfactory although there was one false negative result. It was concluded that the overall performance of the participants was good.

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