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Heavy metals and other elements

Regulation (EC) No 1881/2006 defines the maximum levels of heavy metals in foodstuffs in the European Union.

These elements cannot be broken down, so they accumulate in the food chain. Heavy metals are found in plant and animal products. Some heavy metals are highly toxic for humans and animals.

Regular monitoring of sewage sludge, soils, compost and harvested products prevent heavy metals from entering the food chain.

SYNLAB Service

  • ICP-MS measurement for sensitive trace analysis of heavy metal residues
  • Analysis possible in many matrices, for instance:
    • food
    • fodder
    • farm manure and fermentation substrates
    • compost, soil and sewage sludge
    • hair
    • serum
    • water
    • implements

We regularly participate in inter-laboratory studies to maintain our high quality standards.

In the following, you will find some summarised information on important elements present in foods and fodder and what it means.

Element Location Meaning
Aluminium Cereals, herbs, spices, food additives with aluminium content, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals Light metal; possible harmful effects are currently being investigated
Arsenic Rice and rice products Metalloid, inorganic arsenic compounds are highly toxic and carcinogenic
Lead Mussels, fungi, tobacco, drinking water and lead pipes Damage to the nervous system, the kidneys and the cardiovascular system
Cadmium Algae, seafood, offal, poppy, linseed, sesame, sunflower seeds, wild mushrooms Accumulation in the body, disturbance of the renal function
Chromium (VI) Implements, leather Allergenic
Mercury Fish, seafood Damage to the central nervous system
Tin Food and beverages in uncoated preserves and cans Inorganic tin: less toxic, irritation of the gastrointestinal tract


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Nach zweijähriger Planungs- und Umbauphase entstand in Fellbach das neue Labor der SYNLAB Analytics & Services Germany GmbH.
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Weitere Informationen zu unserem Firmenstand ,den jeweiligen Veranstaltern und Themenschwerpunkten erhalten Sie hier.

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