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Forensic Methodology for Study of Alcoholic Beverages


Improvement of Forensic Methodology for Study of Alcoholic Beverages

Tech Area / Field

  • CHE-ANL/Analytical Chemistry/Chemistry

8 Project completed

Дата регистрации

Дата завершения

Старший менеджер проекта
Frith G

Ведущий институт
Kazakh National University / Center of Physical and Chemical Methods of Analysis, Kazakstan, Almaty

Поддержка институтов

  • Forensic Expertise Center of Kazakhstan, Kazakstan, Almaty


  • MellO3z, USA, IA, Ames\nIowa State University of Science and Technology / Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, USA, IA, Ames\nAwareness Center, Denmark, Roskilde

Краткое описание проекта

The Project aim. Within the framework of this project it is planned to develop new methodology for study of alcoholic beverages for their application in Kazakhstan and worldwide to reveal adulterated and off-grade alcoholic beverages.

Current status. After transfer to market economy, significant widening of the market of alcoholic beverages, availability of feedstock and tools for production of alcoholic beverages in cottage conditions and, as a result, increase of the number of deaths caused by low-quality alcohol poisoning, the problem of detection of adulterated alcoholic beverages is quite actual. In this case, expert’s statement becomes the most significant evidence. The necessity of carrying out forensic studies is obvious and requires a provision of all the forensic services with integrated methodological material. Analysis of forensic practice indicates that solution of a task on discovering adulterated production is complicated due to the lack of data on impurities in alcohol from different production origins, lack of a single database and lack of simple, efficient, selective and sensitive methods of examination of alcoholic beverages and the lack of efficient sampling methodology.

The project’ influence on progress in this area. New developed methods of study of alcohol containing beverages and a developed database (chromatograms, mass spectra, etc.) will allow to significantly improve the efficiency of forensic tasks on discovering adulterated beverages produced in Kazakhstan and imported from foreign countries.

The participants’ expertise: Laboratory “Ecology of Biosphere” of CPCMA of al-Farabi KazNU has a solid background in developing analytical methods for different objectives using modern physical-chemical methods (gas chromatography using different methods of detection, high performance liquid chromatography, mass spectrometry, etc.) and sample preparation (headspace extraction, solid phase microextraction, purge and trap). Researcher of the lab organized and performed studies in the framework of complex multi-disciplinary projects in different areas like rocket space activity (ISTC K-451, K-451.2, K-1482 projects, State Program of Kazakhstan “Development of Space Activity in Kazakhstan” and others), metallurgy and extraction of petroleum. Laboratory “Ecology of Biosphere” of CPCMA is certified for a broad range of xenobiotics in different matrices; about 10 methods were certified by State Standard for their official application in Kazakhstan.

Researchers of CPCMA being specialists in the area of determination of trace quantities of chemicals, analysis of alcoholic beverages and petroleum products using chromatographic and complex hyphenated methods were repeatedly involved for solution of different forensic tasks.

Results of studies and recent developments are regularly published in leading international journals like Chemosphere, Analytica Chimica Acta, Chromatographia and others. CPCMA has strong collaboration with foreign Universities and Research Centers from Denmark, Netherlands, USA, Great Britain and other countries, a number of joint research projects were completed.

Experts of the Service of Forensic Expertise of Substances and Materials of Almaty Regional Scientific Production Laboratory of Forensic Expertise of Forensic Expertise Center of the Ministry of Justice of Kazakhstan are highly qualified specialists in a broad range of forensic tasks closely connected to instrumental methods – gas chromatography, high performance liquid chromatography, GC-MS, IR-spectrometry, X-Ray fluorescence, UV-Vis spectrometry and other methods. The Service is equipped with all the necessary instruments and has highly qualified specialists.

A staff of the Service has a considerable experience in research being authors of a number of forensic methods for study of substances of different nature including alcohol containing liquids, metals and alloys, special chemicals, ores of noble metals, petroleum products, fuel and lubricants, fiber materials and products of them, objects of biological nature. Indicated methods are tested and implemented into forensic practice of Center of Forensic Expertise of Kazakhstan, included into State Register of forensic methods of Kazakhstan. Results of scientific work of staff are published in collections of research papers of the Center of Forensic Expertise of RK and forensic centers in CIS. In the present time, four experts of the Service have qualification of forensic expertise on speciality “forensic examination of alcohol containing liquids”.

Expected results and their application.

During fulfillment of the project, the following results will be obtained:

  1. Improved methods of examination of samples of alcoholic products;
  2. Automated method of examination of samples of alcoholic beverages based of SPME-GC-MS;
  3. Optimized sampling techniques for examination of alcoholic beverages;
  4. A database of results of examination of samples (more than 2500) of alcoholic beverages (chromatograms, mass spectra, UV-spectra, IR spectra);
  5. Methodology and recommendations for discovering of adulterated alcoholic beverages in Kazakhstan;
  6. Publications in international peer-reviewed journals.

The obtained results will have a high demand among republic and regional laboratories of Kazakhstan performing forensic studies of alcoholic beverages, and worldwide.

Results of the project will allow to significantly improve an efficiency of quality control of alcoholic beverages sold in Kazakhstan.

A positive experience on solution of such tasks will be obtained, which will, in future, allow solution of similar tasks on improvement of forensic methods.

The developed methods will find their application not only in Kazakhstan, but also in CIS countries where a problem of discovering adulterated production is actual.

Meeting the ISTC goals and objectives. During fulfillment of the project, weapon scientists and specialists of CIS countries will get possibilities for reorientation of their abilities to peaceful activity; fundamental and applied investigations and development of technologies in peaceful purposes, especially in the field of improvement of forensic methods environmental protection will be supported; national and international technical problems in the field of methodology of forensic examination of alcoholic beverages will be contributed to solution;

Scope of activities. The following activities will be implemented under the Project:

  • Development of new and improvement of the available methods of forensic examination of alcoholic beverages;
  • Examination of samples of alcoholic beverages produced and sold inside Kazakhstan;
  • Development of a methodology and recommendations for discovering adulterated alcoholic beverages in Kazakhstan;
  • Application of the developed methodology and recommendations in forensic tasks in the area of adulteration of alcoholic beverages.

Role of Foreign Collaborators/Partners. Collaborators Lars Carlsen and Jacek Koziel have solid background in development and application of physical chemical methods for investigation of various objects (including alcoholic beverages), Johannes Van Leeuwen has expertise in alcohol production, quality control and purification and kindly agreed to share their experience for solution of project tasks, participate in joint seminars and scientific experiments. Lars Carlsen and Jacek Koziel have a support of al-Farabi Kazakh National University to visit CPCMA once a year with lectures and for consultations. Additionally, with support of al-Farabi Kazakh National University, a training of one Ph.D. student on development of methods for forensic investigation of alcoholic beverages is planned.

Technical approach and methodology. During execution of the Project, the most modern technical approaches and methodologies will be used: multi-dimensional gas chromatography with mass-spectrometric detections for reliable quantitative determination and detection alcoholic beverages constituents, excessive collection of data about samples and simplicity of identification of analytes and their transformation products via mass spectral data; solid-phase microextraction (SPME) for automation, sample throughput, time and cost saving and on-site sampling/sample preparation/analysis; headspace sampling for fast screening analysis; liquid chromatography with diode-array, electrochemical and fluorescence detections for non-volatile and thermally labile compounds (coloring agents, aromatizers, preservatives, etc.) and quality control; mass–spectrometry with inductively coupled plasma (ICP/MS) for rapid and sensitive elemental analysis; IR spectrometry for fast characterization and comparison of samples.


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