A total of 102 helva samples consisting of 34 plain helva, 34 helva containing cacao, and 34 helva containing pistachio nuts purchased from helva-factories and supermarkets in Adana of Turkey were analysed for aflatoxin B-1 (AFB(1)) by thin-layer chromatography. The detection limit of AFB(1) was 1 mu g kg(-1). Recovery experiments were carried out with spiked samples in the range 2-10 mu g kg(-1) of AFB(1). No AFB(1) was found in any plain helva and helva containing cacao samples. On the other hand, of 34 helva containing pistachio nuts AFB(1) was determined in eight samples. AFB(1) was found in excess of Turkish legal limit of 5 mu g kg(-1) in 4 of 102 helva samples. This paper reports the data of the first survey for the presence of AFB(1) in helva in Turkey. (c) 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.