Risk assessment of potentially toxic metals in soil and fertiliser products - fate and effects in the food chain and the environment
The Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food and Environment (VKM) will conduct a risk assessment of potentially toxic metals in soil and fertiliser products and look at the fate and effects of these metals in the food chain and the environment.
The potentially toxic metals arsenic, cadmium, chromium, copper, lead, mercury, nickel and zinc are present as natural elements in soil. They can also be present as contaminants in fertilising materials. With repeated fertiliser applications over time, these metals may accumulate in soil, resulting in negative health and environmental effects.
Levels of toxic metals in agricultural soil
The Norwegian Food Safety Authority has requested the VKM to give their opinion on several questions related to the potentially toxic metals arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), Chromium III (Cr3+), Chromium VI (Cr6+), copper (Cu), lead (Pb), mercury (Hg), nickel (Ni) and zinc (Zn) in Norwegian agricultural soil.
- What do we know about the levels of these metals in agricultural soil in Norway today?
- Describe the fate (mobility) of these elements within and umiddelbart rundt outside of agricultural soil after the application of fertiliser products containing these elements to agricultural land and transfer to the affected organisms in table 1?
- What level of these metals in agricultural soils would give the risk of negative effects* on the selected affected organisms found in table 1?
- What do we know about the current exposure to these metals for the affected exposure levels and the sources for the exposure?
Exposure/intake, not toxicological effects*
- Trine Eggen, VKM member, the panel on animal feed, academic leader of the project
- Gunnar Sundstøl Eriksen, VKM member, the panel on contaminants
- Heidi Amlund, VKM member, the panel on contaminants
- Aksel Bernhoft, external expert from the Norwegian Veterinay Institute
- Belinda Flem, external exper from Geological Survey of Norway
- Anne Falk Øgaard, external expert from NIBIO
- Esther Bloem, external expert from NIBIO
- Jannes Stolte, external expert from NIBIO
- Stefan Trapp, external expert from the Technical University in Denmark
- Line Emilie Tvedt Sverdrup, external expert from DNV GL
- Tron Øystein Gifstad, VKMs secretariat, projekt manager
The VKM Panel on Animal Feed is responsible for the risk assessment. The report will be published during the spring 2021.