Phosphorous fertilisers and cadmium (16/05/22 20:14:47)
"The main effect of Cd on human health is kidney disease, and although other adverse effects have been reported (e.g. pulmonary, cardiovascular, and musculoskeletal systems), controversy exists regarding their effects. The only known case of Cd toxicity (i.e. itai-itai disease) occurred with subsistence farmers in Japan growing rice on soils contaminated with industrial wastes. Cadmium behaviour in soil and its accumulation by crops is complicated. Numerous factors (e.g. soil pH, organic matter content, salinity, macro and micronutrient fertilizers, crops species and cultivar, and tillage) influence the bioavailability and uptake of Cd by crops. Because fertilization increases the risk of Cd transfer to the food chain, some governments have imposed limits restricting the Cd content of P fertilizers. However, scientific risk assessments have shown that P fertilizer containing Cd is safe and does not pose risk to human health."
"Fertilizers made from phosphate rock naturally contain cadmium that can accumulate in the soil; they are to blame for more than half of the heavy metal present in some agricultural soils. On average across Europe today, fertilizer contains about 32 milligrams of cadmium per kilogram (mg Cd/kg) of phosphorus, but the level can be as high as 200 mg Cd/kg, depending on where the phosphate rock is mined. Sedimentary phosphate rock found in northern Africa has naturally high cadmium levels, whereas so-called igneous rock found in Russian phosphate mines has much lower levels.
Humans can get exposed to cadmium by ingesting crops that have taken up the metal from the soil. That doesn't appear to be a major problem in Europe; an EU-wide study published in 2015, for instance, showed that only 0.6% of 1271 nonsmoking women had an exposure higher than the "no-effect threshold.""
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