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Everyone is talking about microplastics! - What is it?

Microplastics have already been found in the most remote regions of the world - from Antarctica to the deep sea. It can therefore be assumed that microplastics could also be found in food. In the international research project “microplastic@food”, approved in 2021, corporate partners are working with scientists to investigate whether and in what quantities microplastics are present in liquid foods.



Catalog of measures to prevent the migration of microplastics into food

On the first pages we have summarized the most important findings from the CORNET project "microplastic@food". You will also find an overview of measures to prevent microplastics from entering food.

Attention: the document is intended for internal use and is therefore password-protected! Email inquiries to m.zederbauer@ecoplus.at



The follow-up project MICROPLEXFOOD has been approved by the CORNET funding agencies! Together with our additional research partner LVA, we are looking forward to spending another 24 months researching causes of possible microplastic input in complex foods and proposing prevention measures



In May 2023, Dr Elisabeth Pinter from the OFI was invited to the "PLASTICS EUROPE'S MICROPLASTICS SCIENTIFIC WORKSHOP" in Amsterdam to present the progress in the Cornet project "microplastic@food". The workshop focused on the identification of sources of microplastics and their detection in different environmental samples or food.

Plastics Europe OFI Pinter


Dr Martin Löder from the University of Bayreuth presented strategies for processing complex samples at the "NETmicroplastic" networking event. The experts of the Collaborative Research Centre 1357 Mikroplastik succeed in separating even complex, interfering matrix structures from natural samples (soils, glacial ice, food, sewage sludge) by means of stepwise purification procedures in order to quantify microplastic particles non-destructively.

NET microplastic UBT Löder


The Freising ZUKUNFTSTAGE took place in October 2022. In addition to exciting presentations on the conformity of food packaging and the recyclability of plastics, Dr Elisabeth Pinter from the OFI gave an overview of the detection of microplastics in simple and more complex foods.

Freising mikroplastic@food Pinter Freising ZT Conformance


ACR Start-up Prize for collaboration between Purency & OFI in the research project "microplastic@food". The start-up Purency GmbH and the ACR Institute OFI - Austrian Research Institute for Chemistry and Technology receive the ACR Start-up Prize 2022 powered by aws for the development of an algorithm that can determine the amount and type of microplastics in food and beverages using spectroscopic imaging measurement data.

www.acr.ac.at/awards/start-up-preis Video (Youtube)


The "Fachgespräch mikroPLASTIK" organised by the Federal Environment Agency, the Ministry of Climate Protection and the Ministry of Health on 20th of September 2022 showed that a broad cooperation of all stakeholders is necessary to further reduce the release of microplastics into the environment. Dr Gabriele Eder from the OFI presented the current state of "Method development for qualitative and quantitative detection of microplastics in food".

UBA microplastics@food Fachgespräch Eder


The 76th ALVA conference (Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Lebensmittel-, Agrar- und Veterinärwesen) focused on "Macro- and Nanoplastics - from Soil and Water to the Plate". In his keynote, Prof. Dr. Christian Laforsch from the University of Bayreuth (SFB 1375 Microplastics) spoke on "Microplastics in the Environment" and explained why plastic has unfortunately turned from a low-cost problem solver into an environmental problem.



At the Long Night of Research there is always a varied programme with exciting experiments from the various scientific disciplines. In May 2022, one of the approximately 2,700 topics was dedicated to was dedicated to "microplastic@food". Dr Gabriele Eder (OFI) vividly shows, where microplastics come from and how they can be detected.

LNFPräsentation2 OFI Eder www.ofi.at/news/lange-nacht-der-forschung-2022


In the 33rd Dt. Lebensmittelbrief, the project "microplastic@food" was presented in detail. By the end of 2023, a "reliable analytical method for the qualitative and quantitative detection of microplastics in food" is to be developed.

Dt. Lebensmittelbrief MP1


The innovative research project "microplastic@food" (MP1) has been classified as eligible for funding by the CORNET Administration. The aim is to develop a valid method for the qualitative and qualitative detection of 16 polymers in liquid foods by September 2023.