Valorized pineapple waste by conventional and energy-saving ohmic extraction: potentially toxic elements and mycotoxin contamination

Main Article Content

Mohsen Gavahian


emerging technologies, energy consumption, food waste, hazardous chemicals, heavy metals, sustainability, valorization


Pineapple peel is a food waste with environmental concerns. It can be valorized by extracting its bioactive compound through conventional and emerging technologies such as ohmic heating. However, mycotoxins and heavy metals contaminations could be concerns of such a valorization process. This study assessed the effects of conventional and ohmic heating on selected aflatoxins and metal ions in pineapple peel extract using high- performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Also, energy consumption and environmental impacts of the ohmic process were analyzed. According to the results, the ohmic-based valorization system reduced energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions by more than 83%, contributing to net-zero and sustainable development goals (SDGs). Aflatoxins B1, B2, G1, and G2 were below the detection limit (B1, G1: 0.2µg/kg; B2, G2: 0.1µg/kg). However, ohmic extracts contained higher concentrations of Cr, Pb, Ni, and Fe because of electrochemical reactions and electrode corrosion. Despite the capability of ohmic valorization systems, inspecting food waste and valorized products for hazardous chemicals and investing in durable electrodes (e.g., titanium) are among the considerations for ohmic systems’ industrial implementation.

Abstract 242 | PDF Downloads 266 HTML Downloads 38 XML Downloads 6


Aranega, J.P.R.B. and Oliveira, C.A.F., 2022. Occurrence of mycotoxins in pastures: a systematic review. Quality Assurance and Safety of Crops & Foods 14(3): 135–144. 10.15586/qas.v14i3.1079

Budi, H.S., Opulencia, M.J.C., Afra, A., Abdelbasset, W.K., Abdullaev, D., Majdi, A., Taherian, M., Ekrami, H.A. and Mohammadi, M.J., 2022. Source, toxicity and carcinogenic health risk assessment of heavy metals. Reviews on Environmental Health. 10.1515/reveh-2022-0096

Cai, S., Zeng, B. and Li, C., 2023. Potential health risk assessment of metals in the muscle of seven wild fish species from the Wujiangdu Reservoir, China. Quality Assurance and Safety of Crops & Foods 15(1): 73–83. 10.15586/qas.v15i1.1121

Codex, 2019. Codex general standard for contaminants and toxins in food and feed 1993–1995. Available at:

Council of Europe, 2002. Guidelines on metals and alloys used as food contact. Council of Europe’s policy statements concerning materials and articles intended to come into contact with foodstuffs. Available at:

Einolghozati, M., Talebi-Ghane, E., Khazaei, M. and Mehri, F., 2023. The level of heavy metal in fresh and processed fruits: a study meta-analysis, systematic review, and health risk assessment. Biological Trace Element Research 201(5): 2582–2596. 10.1007/s12011-022-03332-1

EPA, 2023. Environmental Protection Agency. Available at:

Ferreira, S., Machado, L., Pereira, R.N., Vicente, A.A. and Rodrigues, R.M., 2021. Unraveling the nature of ohmic heating effects in structural aspects of whey proteins–the impact of electrical and electrochemical effects. Innovative Food Science & Emerging Technologies 74: 102831. 10.1016/j.ifset.2021.102831

Gavahian, M. and Chu, R., 2022a. Design, development, and performance evaluation of an ohmic extractor to valorize fruit by-products based on Taguchi method: reduced energy consumption and enhanced total phenolics. Journal of Food Process Engineering 45(6): e13825. 10.1111/jfpe.13825

Gavahian, M. and Chu, R., 2022b. Ohmic heating extraction at different times, temperatures, voltages, and frequencies: a new energy-saving technique for pineapple core valorization. Foods 11(14): 2015. 10.3390/foods11142015

Gavahian, M., Farahnaky, A., Javidnia, K. and Majzoobi, M., 2012. Comparison of ohmic-assisted hydrodistillation with traditional hydrodistillation for the extraction of essential oils from Thymus Vulgaris L. Innovative Food Science & Emerging Technologies 14: 85–91. 10.1016/j.ifset.2012.01.002

Gavahian, M., Lee, Y.-T. and Chu, Y.-H., 2018. Ohmic-assisted hydrodistillation of citronella oil from Taiwanese citronella grass: impacts on the essential oil and extraction medium. Innovative Food Science & Emerging Technologies 48: 33–41. 10.1016/j.ifset.2018.05.015

Gonçalves, B.L., Coppa, C.F.S.C., de Neeff, D.V., Corassin, C.H. and Oliveira, C.A.F., 2019. Mycotoxins in fruits and fruit-based products: occurrence and methods for decontamination. Toxin Reviews 38(4): 263–272. 10.1080/15569543.2018.1457056

Hikal, W.M., Mahmoud, A.A., Said-Al Ahl, H.A.H., Bratovcic, A., Tkachenko, K.G., Kačániová, M. and Rodriguez, R.M., 2021. Pineapple (Ananas Comosus L. Merr.), waste streams, characterisation and valorisation: an overview. Open Journal of Ecology 11(9): 610–634. 10.4236/oje.2021.119039

Heshmati, A., Khorshidi, M. and Khaneghah, A.M., 2021. The prevalence and risk assessment of aflatoxin in sesame-based products. Italian Journal of Food Science 33(SP1): 92–102. 10.15586/ijfs.v33iSP1.2065

Hussain, N., Weng, C.H. and Munawar, N., 2022. Effects of different concentrations of pineapple core extract and maceration process on free-range chicken meat quality. Italian Journal of Food Science 34(1): 124–131. 10.15586/ijfs.v34i1.2086

Jin, Z. and Schwarz, P., 2020. Advances in postharvest storage and handling of barley: methods to prevent or reduce mycotoxin contamination. In: Achieving sustainable cultivation of barley. Burleigh Dodds Science Publishing, pp. 227–264.

Martínez, J., Hernández-Rodríguez, M., Méndez-Albores, A., Téllez-Isaías, G., Jiménez, E.M., Nicolás-Vázquez, M.I. and Ruvalcaba, R.M., 2023. Computational studies of Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1): a review. Toxins 15(2): 135. 10.3390/toxins15020135

Mukhtar, K., Nabi, B.G., Ansar, S., Bhat, Z.F., Aadil, R.M. and Khaneghah, A.M., 2023. Mycotoxins and consumers’ awareness: recent progress and future challenges. Toxicon 232: 107227. 10.1016/j.toxicon.2023.107227

OECD/FAO, 2021. Agricultural outlook 2021–2030. OECD Publishing, Paris.

Onyeaka, H., Anumudu, C.K., Okolo, C.A., Anyogu, A., Odeyemi, O. and Bassey, A.P., 2022. A review of the top 100 most cited papers on food safety. Quality Assurance and Safety of Crops & Foods 14(4): 91–104. 10.15586/qas.v14i4.1124

Pandrangi, S.L., Chittineedi, P., Chikati, R., Lingareddy, J.R., Nagoor, M. and Ponnada, S.K., 2022. Role of dietary iron revisited: in metabolism, ferroptosis and pathophysiology of cancer. American Journal of Cancer Research 12(3): 974–985. 10.3390/membranes12050532

Pataro, G., Barca, G.M.J., Pereira, R.N., Vicente, A.A., Teixeira, J.A. and Ferrari, G., 2014. Quantification of metal release from stainless steel electrodes during conventional and pulsed ohmic heating. Innovative Food Science & Emerging Technologies 21: 66–73. 10.1016/j.ifset.2013.11.009

Pickova, D., Ostry, V., Toman, J. and Malir, F., 2021. Aflatoxins: history, significant milestones, recent data on their toxicity and ways to mitigation. Toxins 13(6): 399. 10.3390/toxins13060399

Qin, G., Niu, Z., Yu, J., Li, Z., Ma, J. and Xiang, P., 2021. Soil heavy metal pollution and food safety in China: effects, sources and removing technology. Chemosphere 267: 129205. 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2020.129205

Samaranayake, C.P. and Sastry, S.K., 2005. Electrode and PH effects on electrochemical reactions during ohmic heating. Journal of Electroanalytical Chemistry 577(1): 125–135. 10.1016/j.jelechem.2004.11.026

Samota, M.K., Kaur, M., Sharma, M., Sarita, Krishnan, V., Thakur, J., Rawat, M., Phogat, B. and Guru, P.N., 2023. Hesperidin from citrus peel waste: extraction and its health implications. Quality Assurance and Safety of Crops & Foods 15(2): 71–99. 10.15586/qas.v15i2.1256

SGS, 2023. Available at:

Stępień, Ł., Koczyk, G. and Waśkiewicz, A., 2013. Diversity of fusarium species and mycotoxins contaminating pineapple. Journal of Applied Genetics 54(3): 367–380. 10.1007/s13353-013-0146-0

Suebsiri, N., Kokilakanistha, P., Laojaruwat, T., Tumpanuvatr, T. and Jittanit, W., 2019. The application of ohmic heating in lactose-free milk pasteurization in comparison with conventional heating, the metal contamination and the ice cream products. Journal of Food Engineering 262: 39–48. 10.1016/j.jfoodeng.2019.05.017

Thakaew, R. and Chaiklangmuang, S., 2023. Aflatoxin B1 elimination in low-grade maize by co-influence of heat and chemical treatment. Quality Assurance and Safety of Crops & Foods 15(3): 55–67. 10.15586/qas.v15i3.1233

USDA, 2016. Contaminants in foods. United States Department of Agriculture Foreign Agricultural Service, GAIN Report Number: CH6064. Available at:

Welke, J.E., 2019. “Fungal and mycotoxin problems in grape juice and wine industries. Current Opinion in Food Science 29: 7–13. 10.1016/j.cofs.2019.06.009