Quantitative Analysis of Ethyl Carbamate in Distillers Grains Co-products and Bovine Plasma by GC-MS

03 June 2020, Version 1
This content is a preprint and has not undergone peer review at the time of posting.


ABSTRACT : Ethyl carbamate (EC) is a fermentation byproduct in foods and beverages and classified as a Group 2A probable human carcinogen. Each year greater than 40 million metric tons of fermentation co-products from the U.S. ethanol industry are fed to food animals. A GC-MS assay was developed to analyze EC extracted from various distillers grains co-products with a limit of detection at 0.7 ng/g. EC was detected in all the distillers grains co-products surveyed in this study. Corn condensed distillers solubles contained the highest level of EC ranging from 1618 to 2956 ng/g. The levels of EC in the semi-solid co-products varied from 17 to 917 ng/g. Cattle fed on these fermentation co-products were found to contain 2-3 ng/mL of EC in blood plasma. No EC was detected in control animal blood plasma. The presence of EC in animal feeds and subsequently in animals may pose an animal health risk.


bovine plasma
distillers grains co-products
ethyl carbamate


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