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Heavy metal contamination in vegetables grown in Rawalpindi, Pakistan
journal contributionposted on 2012-08-01, 00:00 authored by W Ahmed, A Ahmed, A Ahmad, M A Randhawa, R Ahmad, Nauman Khalid
Summary: Copper (Cu), cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr) nickel (Ni), lead (Pb), Iron (Fe), Manganese (Mn) and zinc (Zn) contents of various vegetables (bitter melon, tomato, eggplant, lettuce, cucumber and bell pepper) produced in Rawalpindi, Pakistan was determined using Atomic absorption spectrophotometer (AAS). These plants are the basis of human nutrition in the study area. All vegetables grown at sewage water by farmers showed the highest contamination of heavy metals, followed by local market, Progressive farmers and hydroponic plant. The concentration ranges in mg/kg were (1.45 -2.55) for Cd, (3.10 to 4.92) Cr, (12.15- 20.50) Cu, (25.00-51.00) for Fe, (7.80 to 15.60) for Mn, (10.16 to 15.42) for Ni, (2.12 to 5.41) Pb and (16.58 to 24.08) for zinc. The contamination was above the Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs), set out by WHO. Irregular trends in concentration were also observed in vegetables obtained from local market, progressive farmers and hydroponic plant.