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Determination of Selected Essential (Copper, Zinc) and Non-essential (Lead, Chromium, Cadmium) Heavy Metals in Some Single-use Plastics from Sokoto Metropolis, Nigeria

Yusuf Sarkingobir, AI Umar, Yusuf Yahaya Miya, Abdulrahman Hamza, Umar Tambari, Ibrahim Friday Sule, Dalhatu Zubairu Magori


Background and objectives: The objective of this study is to conduct Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy Analysis of selected essential (Cu, and Zn) and non-essential heavy metals (Cr, Cd, and Pb) in selected different single-use plastics that are in contact with food from Sokoto, Nigeria. Methods: The levels/concentrations of heavy metals in plastics were determined using atomic absorption spectroscopy. Findings: Copper levels range of 0.05000.001 to 0.90100.001 (ppm), while zinc levels are in the range of 0.080.04 to 2.050.06(ppm) among all the single-use plastics observed. Ice cream has highest copper 0.90100.001 (ppm), takeaway has lowest copper 0.05000.001. Straw has highest zinc 2.050.06 (ppm) and bottle has lowest zinc 0.080.04 ppm. Lead concentrations are in the range of 0.07000.001 ppm to 1.60000.02; with bottle having the highest level (1.60000.02 ppm), and straw (S) with lowest level (0.07000.001 ppm) Cadmium is lowest (0.00400.002 ppm) in bottle and highest (0.00950.0003 ppm) in ice cream. Chromium is lowest (0.06000.001 ppm) in ice cream and highest (0.09500.003 ppm) in straw. Lowest chromium level was determined as 0.06000.001 ppm in ice cream, and highest level (0.5400.003 ppm) was determined in bottle. Conclusion: There are noticeable higher levels of non-essential heavy metals (Pb, and Cr) in the plastics observed. There is concern because, chronic accumulation or leaching into foods can occur and harm all the organisms in the ecosystem

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