Indexed on: 24 Dec '15Published on: 24 Dec '15Published in: Talanta
The main limitation in the standard application of head space analysis employing solid phase microextraction (HS-SPME) for the evaluation of plants as sources of essential oils (EOs) are different quantitative relations of EO components from those obtained by direct analysis of EO which was got in the steam distillation (SD) process from the same plant (EO/SD). The results presented in the paper for thyme, mint, sage, basil, savory, and marjoram prove that the quantitative relations of EO components established by HS-SPME procedure and direct analysis of EO/SD are similar when the plant material in the HS-SPME process is replaced by its suspension in oil of the same physicochemical character as that of SPME fiber coating. The observed differences in the thyme EO composition estimated by both procedures are insignificant (F(exp)<F(crit)). In relation to classical EO analysis involving the SD procedure, the application of the new HS-SPME procedure proposed in this paper substantially shortens the evaluation time of plant material quality and thus may improve the efficiency of analytical laboratories.