Levels of essential and toxic metals in milk and baked products

  • COB Okoye
  • CU Ulasi
Keywords: Essential metals, Toxic metals, Low concentrations, Milk, Baked products


Seven essential metals (Ca, Cr, Cu, Fe, Ni, Se and Zn) and two toxic ones Cd and Pb) were determined in milk and some baked products (bread, meat pie and sausages) by atomic absorption spectrophotometry using air-acetylene flame. The mean concentrations (mg/kg, wet matter) were in the following ranges: Ca (29.12 – 7894.45); Zn (2.75 – 18.00); Fe (1.05 – 33.12); Ni (0.75 – 16.82); Cu (0.03 – 0.08); and Pb (0.001 – 0.003). Cadmium, chromium and selenium were below detectable levels. The results are considered generally low in terms of the essential elements except in the cases of Ca and Zn in milk; and Fe and Ni in the baked products. The levels of Cu are too low that none of the food could be considered a good dietary source of the metal. The lead levels are too low in comparison with the standards set by the Food Standards of Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ), indicating that the analyzed samples are not polluted with lead and are safe for human consumption.

Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 1596-7409