In Galicia, Spain, liver copper concentrations, muscle zinc concentrations and kidney cadmium concentrations (in adult cattle) can exceed acceptable maximum concentrations which have been adopted by some countries. The aim was to calculate the contribution of cattle products to the daily intake of trace and toxic metals by humans in Galicia and to evaluate whether there was any health risk to consumers. This was done by comparing calculated intakes with published acceptable daily intake rates for toxic elements and with the accepted safe ranges for population mean intakes of the essential metals. Typically, the contribution of cattle meat and offal to the daily cadmium, lead and arsenic intake of people in Galicia was minimal because offal is rarely eaten. However, liver from older cattle, especially animals from relatively contaminated areas, could pose a health risk if offal was consumed in substantial quantities. Muscle and liver from Galician cattle that exceeded acceptable maximum concentrations for copper and zinc did not pose a risk to human health.
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Document Type: Research Article
Universidade de Santiago de Compostela, Departamento de Patoloxía Animal, Facultade de Veterinaria, E-27002 Lugo, Spain
NERC Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, Monks Wood, Abbots Ripton, Huntingdon PE28 2LS, UK
June 1, 2002
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