Environmental Soil Chemistry Laboratory, University of Tsukuba, 1-1-1 Tennodai, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8577, Japan; Geological Survey of Japan (GSJ), National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), 1-1-1 Higashi, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8567, Japan; Tsukuba Life Science Innovation (T-LSI) Program, School of Integrative and Global Majors, University of Tsukuba, 1-1-1 Tennodai, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8577, Japan. Electronic address: [Email]
The aim of this study was to prove the usefulness of multielements as provenance markers of olive oils by evaluating their link with soil composition and their discriminatory power. Eleven elements in twenty-one olive oils and their paired soils from four Tunisian regions were characterized. Chemometrics have been implemented for ICP-MS data processing. Principal component analysis identified the predominant geochemical source of the elements in the oils based on their associations according to Goldschmidt's rule. Although a clear correlation was not proven, correspondence was identified between the discriminating elements for both the soils and olive oils, which included Fe, Rb, Mg, and Pb. Linear discriminant analysis achieved classification and prediction rates of 92.1% and 87.3%, respectively. Our study substantiates the validity of multielements as markers of the olive oils' provenance, and that an elemental fingerprinting approach can be successfully applied in the construction of a database of Tunisian olive oils.