Human health risk assessment of heavy metals in raw milk of buffalo feeding at wastewater-irrigated agricultural farms in Pakistan

Zafar Iqbal, Farhat Abbas, Muhammad Ibrahim, Tahir Imran Qureshi, Matin Gul, Abid Mahmood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Wastewater irrigation to grow fodder for animals and cattle farming is common practice in Pakistan. Hence, this study was conducted in Multan, Pakistan, to assess heavy metal pollution, human health risk and the total target health quotient (TTHQ) of heavy metals in raw milk of buffalo feeding at different agricultural farms and to identify sources of toxicity in milk. Samples of raw milk (n = 60) were analyzed for Cd, Cr, Cu, Mn, Ni, and Pb by ICP-OES, Perkin Elmer, USA. The TTHQ values of heavy metals ranged from 6.92 to 42.44 in raw milk of buffalo, highest at wastewater-irrigated agricultural farms and lowest at tube well water site, indicating high carcinogenic health risk to exposed population. The multivariate statistical analysis revealed that contaminated fodder like Maize and Brassica plants grown with wastewater and contaminated soil are common sources contributing the heavy metal contamination in raw milk. It invites attention of government to remediate the situation to avoid the potential risks to public health from resulting food chain contamination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29567-29579
Number of pages13
JournalEnvironmental Science and Pollution Research
Volume27
Issue number23
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Animal fodder
  • Carcinogenic health risk
  • Heavy metals
  • Milk contamination
  • Wastewater-irrigated farms

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