Assessment of Heavy Metals Contamination and the Risk of Target Hazard Quotient in Some Vegetables in Isfahan

Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Department of Agronomy, University of Zabol, Zabol, Iran

2 Soil and Water Department, Agricultural and Natural Resources Research Center, Agricultural Research Education and Extension Organization (AREEO), Isfahan, Iran

3 Department of Soil Sciences, Isfahan University of Technology, Isfahan, Iran


The main objective of this study is to evaluate heavy metals contamination of highly consumed vegetables and hazardous effects of consuming these vegetables. The study was conducted in vegetable fields in three different regions according to the level of environmental pollutions, including "Isfahan", "Flavarjan" and "Faridan, Golpayegan and Natanz". Six types of vegetables in each field with three replicates in each region were selected in the summer of 2017 by the random sampling method from vegetable fields. The level of heavy metals (Pb, Cu, Co, Cd and Cr) in vegetables has been measured for each sample. The result showed that in the Isfahan region, the highest daily intake of Pb, Cu, Co, Cd and Cr for the consumption of all the vegetables was obtained in the recipients. The highest target hazard quotient for non-cancerous diseases of contaminated vegetables was 28.9 and 21.1 in "Isfahan" for children and adults, respectively. The target hazard quotient for vegetable consumption was greater than one and at high hazard for both age groups. The principal component analysis showed that the contamination by the heavy metals in the "Isfahan" and "Falavarjan" regions overlapped and the risk of contamination of heavy metals in urban vegetables in both regions increased the hazard of non-cancerous diseases. It is highly recommended that the quality standards of foods that are imposed on the production of food crops.


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