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Heavy metal risk assessment for potatoes grown in overused phosphate-fertilized soils

Abstract

The long-term application of phosphate fertilizers on vegetable production fields has raised concerns about the potential health risks of heavy metal contamination of crops grown on contaminated soils in the Hamadan province, western Iran. This study found that long-term fertilizer use led to a growing accumulation of heavy metals in soils. High concentrations of elemental As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb, and Zn were found in potatoes sampled from overused phosphate-fertilized soils, which increased the daily intake of metals in food. However, the ingestion of potatoes from soils affected by phosphate fertilizers posed a low health risk when compared with the health risk index of <1 for heavy metals. Nevertheless, heavy metal concentrations should be periodically monitored in vegetables grown in these soils. It would also be beneficial to implement effective remediation technologies to minimize possible impacts on human health.

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Correspondence to Mehrdad Cheraghi.

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Cheraghi, M., Lorestani, B., Merrikhpour, H. et al. Heavy metal risk assessment for potatoes grown in overused phosphate-fertilized soils. Environ Monit Assess 185, 1825–1831 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10661-012-2670-5

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Keywords

  • Health risk
  • Heavy metals
  • Phosphate fertilizer
  • Potato
  • Iran