Honey as a bio indicator of the environmental pollution and its risk assessment in El-Minya province

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Aya Harby Abd. Elhakam, Walaa A. Moselhy, Doaa Ramadan I. Abdel-Gawad, Khaled Abbas Helmy Abdou


Honey is a very nutritive food substance with highly therapeutic properties and wide range usage. The probability of heavy metals exposure via honey consumption is high particularly if honey collected from polluted areas either agricultural or   industrial one. In the current investigation the concentration of Copper (Cu), Iron (Fe), Zinc (Zn), Lead (Pb), and Cadmium (Cd) were determined in honey samples which collected from different areas in El-Minya province by Atomic Absorption spectrophotometer (Agilent Technologies 200 series AA/240 FS AA), beside their risk analysis if they  ingested with the contaminated honey. The results were revealed that the concentration of Cu, Fe, Zn, and Pb were lower than their proposed permissible limits by the Egyptian Organization Standard (EOS), whilst Cd element was not detected. Moreover, their risk assessment through the Target Hazard Quotients (THQ), the estimated weekly (EWI) and daily intakes (EDI) were reported to be less than the recommended levels by the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA). In conclusion; honey samples from the investigated areas in El-Minya province were proved to be safe for human consumption because of the low heavy metal content (Cu, Fe, Zn, Pb, and Cd) and no potential public health risks were identified.

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