Journal article

Principles and limitations of stable isotopes in differentiating organic and conventional foodstuffs: 2. Animal products

Caio T Inacio, Phillip M Chalk

CRITICAL REVIEWS IN FOOD SCIENCE AND NUTRITION | TAYLOR & FRANCIS INC | Published : 2017

Abstract

In this review, we examine the variation in stable isotope signatures of the lighter elements (δ2H, δ13C, δ15N, δ18O, and δ34S) of tissues and excreta of domesticated animals, the factors affecting the isotopic composition of animal tissues, and whether stable isotopes may be used to differentiate organic and conventional modes of animal husbandry. The main factors affecting the δ13C signatures of livestock are the C3/C4 composition of the diet, the relative digestibility of the diet components, metabolic turnover, tissue and compound specificity, growth rate, and animal age. δ15N signatures of sheep and cattle products have been related mainly to diet signatures, which are quite variable am..

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