Market basket survey for some heavy metals in Egyptian fruits and vegetables.
A market basket survey was carried out with the aim to assess the levels of lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), copper (Cu) and zinc (Zn) in various fruits and vegetables sold in Egyptian markets. Atomic absorption spectrometry was used to estimate and evaluate the levels of these metals. The results of this survey showed that the average concentrations detected were ranged from 0.01 to 0.87, 0.01 to 0.15, 0.83 to 18.3 and 1.36 to 20.9 mg/kg for Pb, Cd, Cu and Zn, respectively. The highest mean levels of Pb, Cd, Cu and Zn were detected in strawberries, cucumber, date and spinach, respectively. The levels of the metals compare with those reported for similar fruits and vegetables from some other parts of the world. The daily intakes of Pb, Cd, Cu and Zn through fruits and vegetables have also been estimated. They are found to be below the recommended tolerable levels proposed by [Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives 1999. Summary and conclusions. In: 53rd Meeting, Rome, June 1-10, 1999] and may not constitute a health hazards for consumers.
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